Friday, March 15, 2019

Cessna 182A, registered to Wyoming Aviation Inc and operated by Skydive Finger Lakes as a skydiving flight, N9907B: Accident occurred April 23, 2017 near Ovid Airport (D82), Seneca County, New York

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

Additional Participating Entity:

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Rochester, New York

Aviation Accident Factual Report - National Transportation Safety Board: https://app.ntsb.gov/pdf


Investigation Docket - National Transportation Safety Board: https://dms.ntsb.gov/pubdms


http://registry.faa.gov/N9907B


Location: Ovid, NY
Accident Number: ERA17LA166
Date & Time: 04/23/2017, 1250 EDT
Registration: N9907B
Aircraft: CESSNA 182A
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Fuel starvation
Injuries: 1 Minor
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Skydiving 

On April 23, 2017, about 1250 eastern daylight time, a Cessna 182-A, N9907B, experienced a complete loss of engine power during approach and performed a forced landing to a field near Ovid, NY. The commercial pilot received minor injuries and the airplane was substantially damaged. The airplane was operated by Skydive Finger Lakes, as a skydiving flight. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and no flight plan was filed for the local flight that departed Ovid Airport (D82), Ovid, New York. The flight was conducted under the provisions of Title14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91.

The pilot conducted a preflight inspection of the airplane and checked the fuel on board, but did not drained the sumps of the airplane's fuel tanks to test for water or contaminants. According to the pilot, there should have been enough fuel to perform 4 trips based on the "home-made" fuel dip stick that had markings to indicate the number of flight loads that could be flown. In addition, he fueled the airplane up to the "four load" level five days prior to the accident flight, which was the last time the airplane was flown.

At 0945, the pilot began the first flight for the day. After the flight, he checked the fuel tanks again; the right tank indicated two and a half loads and the left tank indicated a half load. He thought he had enough fuel for three additional jumps and did not refuel the airplane.

On the fourth flight of the day, at 10,000 ft mean sea level (msl), after the last jumper had departed the airplane, the pilot initiated a steep left turning descent, with between 45° and 60° of bank. The carburetor heat was applied for the entire descent. At 3,000 ft msl, the engine stopped producing power. The pilot was unable to restart the engine and made a turn to land on the runway, but when it was evident that the airplane would not be able to reach the airport, he landed it in a field about 2,500 ft from the approach end of the runway. During the ground roll, the airplane nosed over and came to rest inverted.

According to the airplane's mechanic, who also flew the airplane, skydiving flights normally climb to 11,000 ft msl to allow the parachutists to jump, then descend making left turns in a 60° bank; the entire flight from takeoff, through jump and landing takes about 27 minutes and the fuel burn was estimated to be about 14 gallons per hour (gph).

The pilot held a commercial pilot certificate with ratings for airplane single-engine land and instrument airplane. He held a third-class airman medical certificate issued on April 12, 2017. The pilot reported 312.1 hours of total flight time, with 55.6 hours in the same make and model as the accident airplane. In the previous 30 days he flew 13.6 hours in the accident airplane.

The single-seat, high-wing, fixed-tricycle landing gear airplane was manufactured in 1957 and held a standard airworthiness certificate in the normal category. It was powered by a Continental O-470, 230-hp engine and equipped with a constant-speed, two-blade McCauley propeller. According to the airplane flight manual, the engine burned 13.4 gph and 14.5 gph at 2,300 and 2,450 rpm respectively. Review of maintenance records revealed that the airplane's most recent annual inspection was completed on April 7, 2017. At the time, the engine had accrued 3,211.90 total hours, 1,760 hours since the most recent overhaul, and the airframe total time was 8,307.37 hours. The airplane had flown 17 hours since the annual inspection.

The weather conditions at Penn Yan Airport (PEO), Penn Yan, New York, located about 11 miles west of the accident site reported wind variable at 8 knots, visibility 10 statute miles, clear skies, temperature 16° C, dew point 3° C, and an altimeter setting of 30.09 inches of mercury.

A Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Inspector who responded to the accident site reported that the left-wing strut was bent, the firewall was damaged, the engine mounts were broken, the nose landing gear was separated, and both wings were wrinkled but the fuel tanks remained intact. The under skin of the fuselage was streaked with exhaust soot its entire length. Two of the bottom spark plugs were removed and they showed evidence of high soot concentrations. The fuel selector valve was set in the "BOTH" position, and the magneto switch was also in the "BOTH" position.

The engine was examined, and the propeller was rotated through the 360° of rotation; it moved freely and there was compression observed at each cylinder. The FAA inspector examined the fuel tanks and found no visible fuel in the right tank and several small several small puddles of fuel under the left wing. When the airplane was recovered several hours later, the inspector was able to sump an undetermined amount of fuel out of both tanks. Residual fuel was discovered in the fuel line that fed the carburetor and fuel was observed from the acceleration pump when the throttle arm was moved. The carburetor fuel filter inlet screen and the gascolator screen had a large amount of contamination described as fibrous with dirt.

In an interview with the FAA inspector, the mechanic stated that he removed and cleaned the carburetor and gascolator screen, but did not remove and examine the carburetor inlet screen during the annual inspection.

Pilot Information

Certificate: Commercial
Age: 22, Male
Airplane Rating(s): Single-engine Land
Seat Occupied: Left
Other Aircraft Rating(s): None
Restraint Used: Lap Only
Instrument Rating(s): Airplane
Second Pilot Present: No
Instructor Rating(s): None
Toxicology Performed: No
Medical Certification: Class 2 Without Waivers/Limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: 04/12/2017
Occupational Pilot: Yes
Last Flight Review or Equivalent:
Flight Time:  312.1 hours (Total, all aircraft), 55.6 hours (Total, this make and model), 239.5 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft), 14 hours (Last 90 days, all aircraft), 14 hours (Last 30 days, all aircraft) 

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: CESSNA
Registration: N9907B
Model/Series: 182A A
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 1957
Amateur Built: No
Airworthiness Certificate: Normal
Serial Number: 34307
Landing Gear Type: Tricycle
Seats: 1
Date/Type of Last Inspection: 04/07/2017, Annual
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 2348 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection: 17 Hours
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 8307 Hours at time of accident
Engine Manufacturer: CONT MOTOR
ELT: C91A installed, activated, did not aid in locating accident
Engine Model/Series: O-470 SERIES
Registered Owner: WYOMING AVIATION INC
Rated Power: 230 hp
Operator: On file
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None
Operator Does Business As: Skydive Finger Lakes
Operator Designator Code: 

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: Visual Conditions
Condition of Light: Day
Observation Facility, Elevation: PEO, 988 ft msl
Distance from Accident Site: 11 Nautical Miles
Observation Time: 1253 EDT
Direction from Accident Site: 260°
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Visibility:  10 Miles
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility (RVR):
Wind Speed/Gusts: Light and Variable /
Turbulence Type Forecast/Actual: /
Wind Direction: Variable
Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual: /
Altimeter Setting: 30.09 inches Hg
Temperature/Dew Point: 16°C / 3°C
Precipitation and Obscuration: No Obscuration; No Precipitation
Departure Point: OVID, NY (D82)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Destination: OVID, NY (D82)
Type of Clearance: None
Departure Time: 1145 EDT
Type of Airspace: Class G

Airport Information

Airport: OVID (D82)
Runway Surface Type: N/A
Airport Elevation: 1062 ft
Runway Surface Condition: Rough; Soft; Vegetation; Wet
Runway Used: N/A
IFR Approach: None
Runway Length/Width:
VFR Approach/Landing: Forced Landing

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Minor
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 1 Minor
Latitude, Longitude:  42.658889, -76.796389 (est)

NTSB Identification: ERA17LA166
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Sunday, April 23, 2017 in Ovid, NY
Aircraft: CESSNA 182A, registration: N9907B
Injuries: 1 Minor.

This is preliminary information, subject to change, and may contain errors. Any errors in this report will be corrected when the final report has been completed. NTSB investigators may not have traveled in support of this investigation and used data provided by various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

On April 23, 2017, about 1250 eastern daylight time, a Cessna 182A, N9907B, was substantially damaged during a forced landing to a field near Ovid, NY. The commercial pilot received minor injuries. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and no flight plan was filed for the local flight that departed Ovid Airport (D82), Ovid, New York. The commercial skydiving flight was conducted under the provisions of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91.

The pilot reported that on the morning of the flight he used a fuel dipstick to check fuel tank quantities prior to his flight. The fuel tank dipstick was marked in the number of skydiving flights and reserve fuel had a mark as well. The right tank showed a higher fuel quantity than the left and when combined, the stick showed enough fuel for three flight loads of jumpers. He further stated that he fueled the airplane up to the "four load" level five days prior to the accident flight, which was the last time the airplane was flown.

At 0945, the pilot began the first flight for the day. After the flight, he checked the fuel tanks again; the right tank indicated 2 and a half loads and the left tank indicated a half load plus reserve. He stated that he "thought it was odd that he had more fuel after the first flight of the day, but attributed it to rising temperatures and expansion." He thought he had enough fuel for three additional jumps and did not refuel the airplane.

On the fourth flight of the day, at 10,000 feet mean sea level (MSL), after the last jumper had departed the airplane, the pilot initiated a steep left turning descent, between 45° and 60° of bank. He turned on the carburetor heat for the entire descent. At 1,000 feet, he leveled the airplane off and entered the downwind leg of the traffic pattern for landing, when the engine stopped producing power. The pilot was unable to restart the engine and made a turn to land on the runway. When it was evident that the airplane would not make the runway, he performed a forced landing to a field adjacent to the airport. During the ground roll, the airplane nosed over and came to rest inverted.

A Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) inspector who responded to the accident site reported that the left-wing strut was bent and the firewall was damaged. The engine mounts were broken, the nose landing gear was separated, and both wings were wrinkled. The FAA inspector examined the fuel tanks and found no visible fuel. Further examination of the gascolator screen and fuel inlet screen contained some unknown debris. and engine continuity showed no defects.

According to FAA airworthiness and airplane maintenance records, the airplane was manufactured in 1957. The airplane's most recent annual inspection was completed on April 7, 2017. At the time of the inspection, the airplane had accrued approximately 8,307 total hours of operation. The engine had accrued approximately 1,760 hours of operation since major overhaul.

The wreckage was retained by the NTSB for further examination.

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