Saturday, March 02, 2019

SkyStar Kitfox XL4, registered to and operated by the pilot under the provisions of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91, N93XL: Accident occurred March 02, 2019 near Merritt Island Airport (KCOI), Brevard County, Florida

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

Additional Participating Entity:

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Mirimar, Florida

Aviation Accident Factual Report - National Transportation Safety Board:

Location: Merritt Island, FL
Accident Number: ERA19TA114
Date & Time: 03/02/2019, 0918 EST
Registration: N93XL
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Hard landing
Injuries: 1 Serious
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal 

On March 2, 2019, at 0918 eastern standard time, an experimental amateur-built Kitfox XL4, N93XL, sustained minor damage when it impacted Sykes Creek during a rejected landing at the Merritt Island Airport (COI), Merritt Island, Florida. The commercial pilot was seriously injured. The airplane was registered to and operated by the pilot under the provisions of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and no flight plan was filed for the local personal flight that originated at COI at 0900.

The pilot stated that he bounced on landing and the airplane veered to the left. He applied full power to go-around and the airplane "went sharply to the right" and impacted the water. The pilot said the airplane sank in about 8 ft of water before he was able to release the seatbelt/shoulder harness and float to the surface. He did not recall anything after that.

A witness, who was a flight instructor, observed the accident from an airplane on the hold short line for runway 29. He saw the accident airplane turn onto the final approach leg of the traffic pattern and make a stable approach to the runway. The flight instructor turned away for a moment, but when he looked back up, the airplane was in a 90° right bank flying perpendicular to the runway. The right-wing tip was about 10 ft from the ground as the airplane veered toward the water. The right-wing tip struck the water first, which resulted in the nose of the airplane pitching down under the water and submerging the cabin.

Another witness was fishing on his boat with his son when he first observed the airplane. He said the airplane bounced while landing and then climbed about 15 to 25 ft before making a sharp right bank. The airplane then crashed nose first into the water. The witness and his son immediately responded, lifted the pilot on to their boat, and successfully revived him with CPR before rescue personnel arrived.

A postaccident examination of the airplane revealed minor damage to the left-wing tip, engine cowling, and the propeller.

The pilot told a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) inspector that his flying skills had diminished and that he lost control of the airplane. He reported there were no mechanical problems that would have precluded normal operation of the airplane or engine at the time of the accident.

The pilot, age 89, held a commercial pilot certificate with a rating for airplane single-engine land. His last FAA third-class medical was issued on March 22, 2010. The pilot reported a total of 5,000 flight hours, of which, 50 hours were in the accident airplane.

Weather reported at Patrick Air Force Base, Cocoa Beach, Florida, about 9 miles southeast of the accident site, at 0856, was wind 250° at 4 knots, visibility 10 miles, clear skies, temperature 23°, dew point 21°, and an altimeter setting of 30.14 inches of mercury.

Pilot Information

Certificate: Commercial; Private; Sport Pilot
Age: 89, Female
Airplane Rating(s): Single-engine Land
Seat Occupied: Left
Other Aircraft Rating(s): None
Restraint Used: 3-point
Instrument Rating(s): None
Second Pilot Present: No
Instructor Rating(s): None
Toxicology Performed: No
Medical Certification: Sport Pilot None
Last FAA Medical Exam:
Occupational Pilot: No
Last Flight Review or Equivalent:
Flight Time:  5000 hours (Total, all aircraft), 50 hours (Total, this make and model), 10 hours (Last 90 days, all aircraft), 10 hours (Last 30 days, all aircraft)

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: REMPE
Registration: N93XL
Model/Series: KITFOX XL4
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 2009
Amateur Built: Yes
Airworthiness Certificate: Experimental
Serial Number: BCX001
Landing Gear Type: Tailwheel
Seats: 2
Date/Type of Last Inspection: 11/04/2018, Condition
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 1050 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection: 10 Hours
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 90 Hours at time of accident
Engine Manufacturer: Rotax
ELT: Not installed
Engine Model/Series: 503 UL
Registered Owner: On file
Rated Power: 50 hp
Operator: On file
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None 

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: Visual Conditions
Condition of Light: Day
Observation Facility, Elevation: COF, 8 ft msl
Distance from Accident Site: 9 Nautical Miles
Observation Time: 0856 EST
Direction from Accident Site: 200°
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Visibility: 10 Miles
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility (RVR): 
Wind Speed/Gusts: 4 knots /
Turbulence Type Forecast/Actual: None / None
Wind Direction: 250°
Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual: N/A / N/A
Altimeter Setting: 30.14 inches Hg
Temperature/Dew Point: 23°C / 21°C
Precipitation and Obscuration: No Obscuration; No Precipitation
Departure Point: Merritt Island, FL (COI)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Destination: Merritt Island, FL (COI)
Type of Clearance: None
Departure Time: 0900 EST
Type of Airspace: Class E

Airport Information

Airport: Merritt Island (COI)
Runway Surface Type: Asphalt
Airport Elevation: 5 ft
Runway Surface Condition: Dry
Runway Used: 11
IFR Approach: None
Runway Length/Width: 3601 ft / 75 ft
VFR Approach/Landing: Go Around 

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Serious
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 1 Serious
Latitude, Longitude:  28.341389, -80.685278 (est)

BREVARD COUNTY, Florida — Brevard County Fire Rescue is investigating a small plane crash at Merritt Island Airport. 

According to an airport spokesperson, the plane took off from the airport and went down into Sykes Creek about 50 yards off the runway around 9:08 a.m. 

According to Brevard Fire Rescue, at least one person was brought to shore by boat.  That person was flown as a trauma alert to Holmes Regional Medical Center. 

No word yet on how many people were on board the plane when it went down, or what led to the crash. 

Original article can be found here ➤

MERRITT ISLAND, Florida —  A small plane crashed into the water Saturday morning near the Merritt Island Airport, fire officials said.

Brevard County Fire Rescue officials said the plane crashed a little before 9:15 a.m.

Officials said the pilot of the plane was brought to land by boat and then taken to a hospital by helicopter. The pilot is expected to survive.

Nobody else was on the plane when it crashed.

The cause of the crash remains under investigation.

Story and video ➤

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