Thursday, March 14, 2019

North American T-28B Trojan, N5440F and Cessna 152, N48962: Fatal accident occurred March 13, 2019 at Compton-Woodley Airport (KCPM), Los Angeles County, California

The National Transportation Safety Board traveled to the scene of this accident.

Additional Participating Entity: 

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Los Angeles, California

N5440F  Aviation Accident Preliminary Report - National Transportation Safety Board:  https://app.ntsb.gov/pdf


https://registry.faa.gov/N5440F

Location: Compton, CA
Accident Number: WPR19FA095A
Date & Time: 03/13/2019, 1855 PDT
Registration: N5440F
Aircraft: North American T28
Injuries: 1 None
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal 

On March 13, 2019, about 1855 Pacific daylight time, a Cessna 152 airplane, N48962, and a North American T-28 Trojan, N5440F, collided while landing on runway 25L at the Compton/Woodley Airport, Compton, California. The student onboard the Cessna was fatally injured and the flight instructor sustained serious injuries; the Cessna was destroyed after being consumed by fire. The Airline Transport Pilot onboard the T-28 was not injured; the T-28 sustained minor damage. The T-28 was operated by Tomorrow's Aeronautical Museum and the Cessna was operated by the Long Beach Flying Club. Both airplanes were being operated under Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 as personal flights. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and no flight plan was filed for either flight. The Cessna departed for a local instructional flight from the Long Beach Airport, Long Beach, California at an unknown time. The T-28 departed for a local personal flight from Whiteman Airport, Los Angeles, California about 1830 with a planned destination of Compton.


There were multiple video recordings that captured the accident. A review of the footage revealed that the Cessna touched down and continued on the landing roll out. The T-28 crossed over the runway threshold bar about 10 seconds after the Cessna and subsequently touched down. On the landing roll, adjacent to the "1/2" sign (indicates half of the runway remains), the T-28 impacted the Cessna resulting in an explosion.


The T-28 pilot stated that as he turned the airplane left from the base leg to final approach in the traffic pattern for runway 25L, he noticed a layer of haze on the horizon. The bright sun and the haze created a glare on the windscreen that obscured his forward vision making it difficult for him to see directly ahead. As he descended toward the runway, the glare became worse and he realized he was in between runway 25L and 25R. He side-stepped to runway 25L and the airplane touched down on the runway surface. Several seconds later, the pilot observed the Cessna on the runway ahead of him. He felt the impact with the other airplane and resulting explosion immediately thereafter. The T-28 continued about 1,000 ft before coming to rest off the right side of 25L (see figure 01).



Figure 01: Wreckage Distribution

Utilizing the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) sunrise/sunset calculator and solar position calculator, the time of sunset was 1859:24. The sun's azimuth at the time of the accident was 267° (see figure 02) and the elevation was 0.50° (about 90 ft above the horizon).

Figure 02: Solar Position 

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information


Aircraft Make: North American

Registration: N5440F
Model/Series: T28 B
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Amateur Built: No
Operator:
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan


Conditions at Accident Site: Visual Conditions

Condition of Light: Day
Observation Facility, Elevation: KHHR, 63 ft msl
Observation Time: 0153 UTC
Distance from Accident Site: 5 Nautical Miles
Temperature/Dew Point: 17°C / 0°C
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: 11 knots / 16 knots, 270°
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility:  10 Miles
Altimeter Setting: 30.02 inches Hg
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Departure Point: Los Angeles, CA (WHP)
Destination: Compton, CA (CPM)

Wreckage and Impact Information


Crew Injuries: 1 None

Aircraft Damage: Minor
Passenger Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 1 None
Latitude, Longitude: 33.889444, -118.240833

https://registry.faa.gov/N48962


N48962 Aviation Accident Preliminary Report - National Transportation Safety Board:  https://app.ntsb.gov/pdf

Location: Compton, CA
Accident Number: WPR19FA095B
Date & Time: 03/13/2019, 1855 PDT
Registration: N48962
Aircraft: Cessna 152
Injuries: 1 Fatal, 1 Serious
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Instructional 

On March 13, 2019, about 1855 Pacific daylight time, a Cessna 152 airplane, N48962, and a North American T-28 Trojan, N5440F, collided while landing on runway 25L at the Compton/Woodley Airport, Compton, California. The student onboard the Cessna was fatally injured and the flight instructor sustained serious injuries; the Cessna was destroyed after being consumed by fire. The Airline Transport Pilot onboard the T-28 was not injured; the T-28 sustained minor damage. The T-28 was operated by Tomorrow's Aeronautical Museum and the Cessna was operated by the Long Beach Flying Club. Both airplanes were being operated under Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 as personal flights. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and no flight plan was filed for either flight. The Cessna departed for a local instructional flight from the Long Beach Airport, Long Beach, California at an unknown time. The T-28 departed for a local personal flight from Whiteman Airport, Los Angeles, California about 1830 with a planned destination of Compton.

There were multiple video recordings that captured the accident. A review of the footage revealed that the Cessna touched down and continued on the landing roll out. The T-28 crossed over the runway threshold bar about 10 seconds after the Cessna and subsequently touched down. On the landing roll, adjacent to the "1/2" sign (indicates half of the runway remains), the T-28 impacted the Cessna resulting in an explosion.

The T-28 pilot stated that as he turned the airplane left from the base leg to final approach in the traffic pattern for runway 25L, he noticed a layer of haze on the horizon. The bright sun and the haze created a glare on the windscreen that obscured his forward vision making it difficult for him to see directly ahead. As he descended toward the runway, the glare became worse and he realized he was in between runway 25L and 25R. He side-stepped to runway 25L and the airplane touched down on the runway surface. Several seconds later, the pilot observed the Cessna on the runway ahead of him. He felt the impact with the other airplane and resulting explosion immediately thereafter. The T-28 continued about 1,000 ft before coming to rest off the right side of 25L (see figure 01).


Figure 01: Wreckage Distribution

Utilizing the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) sunrise/sunset calculator and solar position calculator, the time of sunset was 1859:24. The sun's azimuth at the time of the accident was 267° (see figure 02) and the elevation was 0.50° (about 90 ft above the horizon).

Figure 02: Solar Position 

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Cessna

Registration: N48962
Model/Series: 152 No Series
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Amateur Built: No
Operator: Long Beach Flying Club
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan


Conditions at Accident Site: Visual Conditions

Condition of Light: Day
Observation Facility, Elevation: KHHR, 63 ft msl
Observation Time: 0153 UTC
Distance from Accident Site: 5 Nautical Miles
Temperature/Dew Point: 17°C / 0°C
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: 11 knots / 16 knots, 270°
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility:  10 Miles
Altimeter Setting: 30.02 inches Hg
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Departure Point: Long Beach, CA (LGB)
Destination:  Long Beach, CA (LGB)

Wreckage and Impact Information


Crew Injuries: 1 Fatal, 1 Serious

Aircraft Damage: Destroyed
Passenger Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Fire: On-Ground
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: On-Ground
Total Injuries: 1 Fatal, 1 Serious
Latitude, Longitude: 33.889444, -118.240833

Those who may have information that might be relevant to the National Transportation Safety Board investigation may contact them by email eyewitnessreport@ntsb.gov, and any friends and family who want to contact investigators about the accident should email assistance@ntsb.gov.


Lukas Michael Swidinski


Lukas, a friend, brother, son and mentor. 

Lukas has been fascinated with airplanes and had dreams to become a pilot himself. Unfortunately, last Wednesday Lukas and his flight instructor were involved in tragic plane accident and as a result Lukas did not survive. He was enthusiastic with everything he did in his life and he died doing one of the things he loved most. 

Lukas’ closest family, his mother Alicja and brother Mario, are making arrangements to come to the US from Europe to lay Lukas to rest. The funds raised here will help with funeral expenses, family’s travel expenses, and to be sure Lukas is taken care of and remembered well by the people he has touched throughout his life. 

There were many people that Lukas made an impact on in their lives, whether it was his students or people in the dive community, he was truly an amazing person. Lukas’ passion and talent for music inspired many young minds. Lukas was a kind and generous person who would do anything to help his friends. Lukas loved all animals and considered his cats family members. He had the most adventurous spirit, the biggest heart and the largest smile. From music, to motorcycles, to roller coasters, to scuba diving and flying Lukas lived his life with an enormous amount of enthusiasm.  He will be missed by family, friends, students and colleagues.  

https://www.gofundme.com



Fund Raising For Ryan Davis Family
https://www.gofundme.com

Ryan Davis is an amazing pilot, friend, and/or associate to many of us. He has provided countless people with the knowledge needed to live their dreams as a PILOT.  Ryan was in a tragic plane crash in Compton, California, March 13th when another plane crashed into the plane he was teaching in. His student was killed and Ryan is in the hospital and is in ICU and critical condition. Ryan, Jamie, and their daughter are going to need significant resources beyond any possible insurance limits to get through this healing process over the next several months.  He is a wonderful, caring man and he and his family really need us to come together and help right now. Anything you can give will go a long way in his recovery, and sharing this with your friends will help a lot as well.




Authorities Thursday identified a student pilot who was killed when two planes collided on a runway at Compton/Woodley Airport.

The crash occurred about 7 p.m. March 13 on Runway 25L on March 13, when a North American T-28B Trojan crashed into a Cessna 152 occupied by a flight instructor and a student pilot.

The fatally injured man was identified today by the coroner's office as 40-year-old Lukas Michael Swidinski of Long Beach.

"The Cessna landed first, trailed by the T28," Ian Gregor of the Federal Aviation Administration said in a statement. "The North American T-28B Trojan landed and ran into the Cessna 152, which was still on the runway, causing the Cessna 152 to explode. There were two people on the Cessna 152 and one on the North American T-28B Trojan."

The second man in the Cessna 152 was a flight instructor in his 30s. He was taken to a hospital in critical condition, the sheriff's department said.

The pilot of the North American T-28B Trojan was unhurt, according to the sheriff's department.

Personnel from the FAA and the National Transportation Safety Board were working to determine what caused the two planes to collide.

The North American T-28B Trojan is a military trainer first used by the U.S. Air Force and U.S. Navy in the 1950s, then was utilized as a counter-insurgency aircraft in the Vietnam War.

Anyone who may have witnessed the crash was asked to call the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department's Aero Bureau at (562) 421-2701.


https://www.nbclosangeles.com




A flight instructor remained in critical condition Thursday after a fiery, two-plane crash at the Compton/Woodley Airport killed his student the previous evening.

The Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department described the surviving victim as a man in his 30s and the student as a man in his 40s. They were in a single-engine Cessna 152, which was struck by a single-engine North American T-28 on the runway around 7 p.m. Wednesday.

The pilot of the T-28 did not sustain any injuries in the incident, the Sheriff's Department said. That aircraft, which bears the U.S. Navy sign, appeared to be mostly intact as it sat at the airfield on Thursday morning.

Officials have yet to identify the three individuals involved.

The Cessna had just landed on the runway when the T-28 touched down and ran into it, causing the Cessna to explode, according to the Federal Aviation Administration.

"Like many general aviation airports, Compton does not have a control tower," FAA Public Affairs Manager Ian Gregor said. "Pilots communicate with each other on a common radio frequency."

The T-28 appeared to approach the Cessna from behind before landing on top of it, witnesses told KTLA on Wednesday night.

"It just sounded like the darnedest explosion you would imagine… I saw one of the airplanes involved in the crash dragging parts of the other airplane down the runway," pilot Billy Jackson said.

The Compton Fire Department responded to the scene and extinguished the blaze, the L.A. County Sheriff's Department said.

The FAA is helping the National Transportation Safety Board investigate the case.  The NTSB typically takes at least a year to determine what caused an incident, Gregor noted.

A 2015 crash at the county-owned Compton airport left a pilot dead when a single-engine plane that had been trying to tow an advertising banner crashed and burned on a runway, the Associated Press reported.

Story and video ➤ https://ktla.com














COMPTON, California (KABC) -- One person was killed when two small planes collided in a fiery crash at Compton/Woodley Airport Wednesday night. 

The crash was reported just before 7 p.m. It appeared to involve a vintage Vietnam-era T-28 aircraft and a small plane that appears to be a Cessna. 

The small plane was destroyed and burned up in the crash. One pilot was apparently ejected from one of the aircraft and killed. 

Pieces of the aircraft are littering the runway and the wing landed about 100 yards away from the main fuselage. 

Witnesses say it appeared the Cessna had already landed and was taxiing when the other pilot, possibly having trouble with the setting sun, also tried landing on the same runway and crashed into it. 

Firefighters and law enforcement officials were on the scene. 

Paramedics transported another person from the scene in an ambulance. 

Story and video ➤https://abc7.com

25 comments:

Anonymous said...

What a horrific accident. That big 3-bladed prop on that powerful radial engine must have tore that Cessna to pieces. At a non-towered airport you have to listen carefully to the CTAF/UNICOM to get a mental picture of where the traffic is but you also have to visually look for the traffic too. If you're not sure where someone is, call out on the radio to clarify. I would think the T-28 was at fault here. Sad story, my condolence to the families of the deceased and RIP to the Cessna pilots.

Anonymous said...

Yes. The T-28 is at fault, he/she (zhe/ze in California ;) did not follow proper protocol.

mouser485 said...

If you want to see the actual accident here it is. It’s on Live Leak.

https://www.liveleak.com/view?t=PWfK_1552593846

Geek with Wings said...

Both planes were landing: https://www.reddit.com/r/CatastrophicFailure/comments/b14eh8/aircraft_incident_in_compton_ca_313/?st=JT9P68AR&sh=9f3fb369

Anonymous said...


The "museum pilot" strikes yet again.

Anonymous said...

I just found this video of the entire crash on Youtube and it sickens me that such carelessness caused such carnage. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T8NAfY-IcvA

Unknown said...

Similar accident between a small and large a/c. Large one “doesn’t recall” making a call that he was landing.

http://www.kathrynsreport.com/2018/04/cessna-150-n5614e-and-cessna-525c.html

Anonymous said...

it seems like the sun setting down caused the glare on the T28s and the cessna was not visible to it.

Anonymous said...

Better hope the T28 pilot and museum have good lawyers. They are going to need it.

Anonymous said...

I rather hope that the family of the deceased has a good lawyer!

Anonymous said...

I assure you, the attorneys will find them ..... and they have 364 days to do so

Anonymous said...

There are a few types of accidents that I think about every now and then when flying and this is one scenario. It is so disconcerting to be taking off or landing (or driving for that matter) into the sun. I imagine a deer or another vehicle on the runway... ugh! My heart goes out to the affected individuals and families. I know the Trojan pilot is going to be blamed but goodness, I wouldn't want that guilt on me! One moment you're on top of the world and the next, it all lands on you.

Anonymous said...

You can always go around...

Anonymous said...

Wouldn't you think the guy taking the video would have, should have tried to wave off the T28? It was obvious what was about to occur.

Anonymous said...

Wouldn't you think the guy taking the video would have, should have tried to wave off the T28? It was obvious what was about to occur.

Anonymous said...

Wave? Like how? And as shown in the video the sun was blazing where the T28 was going. The problems with i2 aircrafts on final are too numerous to enumerate and for the ntsb to figure out who when where but since both were of the same type and class ie single engine land, the aircraft below the other had priority ie the Cessna, unless it carelessly used that rule to force its way in . Which is doubtful.

Anonymous said...

This is why we have a unicom at non-towered airports. The "I couldn't see him because the sun was in my eyes" will only take him so far. It's the pilots responsibility to maintain visual separation, when he lost visual he should have been on the radio for a position report. This was some sloppy pilotage.

Anonymous said...

Doing long straight in approach with T-28 or similar type warbird with huge engine results in poor forward viability. It also usually results in a poor landing while dragging the plane in with the prop. If engine fails, you don’t make it to runway. Many experienced pilots use a carrier type approach for this reason with a shorter steeper approach rounding base to final to improve your ability to clear your landing approach. Pattern traffiic, or in some cases, the tower extending your downwind, sets you up for the long straight in. It can be very frustrating due to poor visibility. No excuse though for lack of communication or the accident. I observe careless and or a total lack of communication at non towered airports on a daily basis. Many pilots call out a straight in from 5 miles assuming runway is now theirs when there are planes in the pattern. Make you wonder who their instructor was.

Anonymous said...

Any update on the surviving CFI's condition? I would imagine he has to be badly burned and it will be a long road to recovery if he survives.

Anonymous said...

The T-28 pilot was negligent in the extreme. How can anyone not think this is an instance of manslaughter at the least, or 2nd degree murder and assault at the worst? The T-28 pilot should have been arrested at the scene. Equal liability also rests with the T-28 owner who permitted an incompetent or impaired pilot to operate his plane, then stood next to the runway and shot the video of both planes approaching, is heard to say, "He doesn't see him," and took no action whatever to try to wave off his plane. Both men should never again be allowed to own or operate an aircraft. There are no "amends" in the universe to atone for their deadly actions.

Anonymous said...

Checked the museum of the future and its goals are laudable i.e provide an interest in aviation to disenfranchised youth from the ghettos and minorities... but I suspect one of these students may have been the PIC of that plane or some flight to simply get the old bird to get some oil pumping. In any case this was reckless behavior and ignorance of see and avoid given if the sun was shining so brightly at the end of a runway the plane shall have refrained from landing until it sat below the horizon.

They are probably lawyered up for obvious reasons. And their most logical excuse will be some kind of made up emergency. No radio isn't an emergency but most likely the pilot will claim there was some overwhelming cause that made him want to land asap. As advised by their counsel.

The 150 I trained in on occasion had, strangely, a rear view mirror. I wonder if any GA plane operator like me could install a cheap $50 rear facing camera. As you never know who's the idiot who can try on you from the back.

Anonymous said...

" How can anyone not think this is an instance of manslaughter at the least, or 2nd degree murder and assault at the worst? "

Doesn't work that way in our country. Probable fine, suspension/revocation.

Then comes the civil action.

Frosty said...

How is the CFI doing?

Anonymous said...

I read that the pilot may have lost comm's. I wonder if the pilot had his cell phone with him. Since the T28 is owned by the museum on Compton, it may have been prudent to fly the pattern and call someone there or even better the Compton Airport office. Lost comm's in complicated airspace, combined with the sun's glare, the model aircraft, etc. required some careful thought. Very sad outcome for all involved.

Anonymous said...

https://www.gofundme.com/f/fund-raising-for-ryan-davis-family
For those asking how the Cessna CFI is doing here is the link to his gofundme account. Ryan is still fighting a long battle, still in the hospital. He and his family can use any help provided.
Thanks