Sunday, February 10, 2019

Hawker Hunter Mk 58, N323AX: Accident occurred December 12, 2018 near Daniel K. Inouye International Airport (PHNL), Honolulu, Hawaii

The National Transportation Safety Board did not travel to the scene of this accident.

Additional Participating Entity:

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Honolulu, Hawaii

Aviation Accident Preliminary Report - National Transportation Safety Board:

Location: Honolulu, HI
Accident Number: WPR19LA041
Date & Time: 12/12/2018, 1430 HST
Registration: N323AX
Aircraft: Hawker HAWKER HNTR FMK 58
Injuries: 1 Serious
Flight Conducted Under: Public Aircraft 

On December 12, 2018, about 1430 Hawaii-Aleutian standard time, a Hawker Hunter MK-58 airplane, N323AX, was destroyed when it impacted open ocean shortly after takeoff from Daniel K Inouye International Airport (HNL), Honolulu, Hawaii. The airline transport pilot was seriously injured after he ejected from the airplane prior to impact. The airplane was registered to Hunter Aviation International and operated by Airborne Tactical Advantage Company (ATAC) as a public aircraft. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the accident and an instrument flight rules flight plan was filed for the local flight that departed about 1428.

The purpose of the flight was to support adversary and electronic warfare training with U.S. military forces. The accident airplane departed as the wingman in a flight of two Hunters, intending to participate in an adversarial support air-to-air training exercise ("Sentry Aloha") off shore in warning areas W-188C, W-189, and W-190. The flight's radio call sign was "ATAC 01," and the accident airplane was "ATAC 02."

The pilot reported that during the departure phase of the flight, the engine experienced a loss of power about 500 ft above ground level during the departure turnout. The pilot attempted to restart the engine, but the airspeed continued to decay, at which point he decided to eject. After he ejected from the airplane, the pilot reported that he got one swing in the parachute prior to water entry. The airplane wreckage subsequently sank. 

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Hawker
Registration: N323AX
Model/Series: HAWKER HNTR FMK 58 MARK 58A
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Amateur Built: No
Operator: Airborne Tactical Advantage Company
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: Visual Conditions
Condition of Light: Day
Observation Facility, Elevation: PHNL, 7 ft msl
Observation Time: 0053 UTC
Distance from Accident Site: 5 Nautical Miles
Temperature/Dew Point: 26°C / 19°C
Lowest Cloud Condition: Few / 2500 ft agl
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: 15 knots / 19 knots, 20°
Lowest Ceiling: Broken / 5000 ft agl
Visibility:  10 Miles
Altimeter Setting: 30.15 inches Hg
Type of Flight Plan Filed: IFR
Departure Point: Honolulu, HI (HNL)
Destination: Honolulu, HI (HNL)

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Serious
Aircraft Damage: Destroyed
Passenger Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 1 Serious
Latitude, Longitude:  21.255278, -157.878889 (est)

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