Sunday, April 21, 2019

Cessna 305A, flight conducted under the provisions of Federal Aviation Regulations Part 91, N5312G: Accident occurred November 25, 2015 near Southland Field Airport (KUXL), Sulphur, Calcasieu Parish, Louisiana

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

Additional Participating Entity:
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Baton Rouge, Louisiana

Aviation Accident Factual Report - National Transportation Safety Board:

Investigation Docket - National Transportation Safety Board:

Location: Sulphur, LA
Accident Number: CEN16LA064
Date & Time: 11/24/2015, 1447 CDT
Registration: N5312G
Aircraft: CESSNA 305A
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Fuel contamination
Injuries: 1 Minor, 1 None
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal 

On November 24, 2015, about 1447 central daylight time, a Cessna 305 airplane, N5312G, registered to a private individual, sustained substantial damage during a forced landing after a loss of engine power after takeoff from the Southland Field Airport (UXL), Sulphur, Louisiana. The private pilot sustained minor injuries and his pilot-rated passenger was not injured. The flight was being conducted under the provisions of Federal Aviation Regulations Part 91. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed throughout the area and a flight plan was not filed. The flight originated about 1345 from the pilot's private airstrip (52LA), located in Bell City, Louisiana.

The pilot, who was also an A&P mechanic, had completed the installation of a CGR-30P engine monitor on November 20, 2015, in N5312G. After the installation, he flew the airplane from 52LA to UXL to check/reset the "K" factor for the fuel flow feature of the monitor. He reported that the flight to and from UXL lasted approximately 30 minutes and the entire flight was uneventful.

The pilot reported that the intent of the flight on November 24, 2015, was to deliver the airplane to its owner located at the Lake Charles Regional Airport (LCH), Lake Charles, Louisiana. Prior to departure from 52LA, the pilot decided that he would first fly the airplane to UXL to perform a few touch and go landings and refuel the tanks to recheck the "K'' factor of the new monitor prior to flying to LCH.

Upon completion of the second touch and go on runway 15 at UXL, the pilot applied full power for takeoff, pushed the carburetor heat control to the forward/cold position, rotated off the runway, and commenced a standard climb for pattern altitude. At some point at the south end of runway 15, the pilot started a left crosswind turn to set up for a full stop landing on runway 15. At this time, the engine instantaneously stopped firing, and the pilot determined that he would have to make an "off field" landing. The airplane landed ground upright in a field with dense, wet, vegetation. Emergency personnel evacuated the pilot and passenger. Both wings and fuselage sustained substantial damage.

The pilot-rated passenger, who was seated in the rear seat, reported that the entire flight was normal until the loss of engine power and forced landing.

The nearest weather reporting station (Lake Charles LCH) was located about 20 miles northeast of the accident site. The reported weather observation METAR at LCH about the time of the accident was: KLCH 1435 CDT AUTO 09010KT 10SM SCT4000 19/7 A3019. According to the Icing Probability Chart, with a temperature of 19 degrees and dew point of 7 degrees, the aircraft engine could have been susceptible to moderate carburetor icing at cruise power or serious icing at descent power.

The engine was examined on August 8, 2017, at the facilities of Air Salvage of Dallas in Lancaster, Texas. The examination was conducted under the supervision of the FAA. The engine remained attached to the airframe and had no external damage, except for impact damage to the intake air box. The throttle and mixture controls were all connected. The crankshaft was rotated by hand and continuity was confirmed to all cylinders and to the rear of the engine. Good thumb compression was confirmed on cylinders one through five. The cylinders were examined with a lighted boroscope and the number six cylinder had heavy corrosion on the intake valve between the valve and the valve seat, so that the valve could not properly seat. The remainder of the cylinders had dark deposits on the cylinder domes and pistons. The aircraft had been modified with a STC allowing the use of auto gas. The magneto impulse couplings snapped at top dead center on the number one cylinder. The top spark plugs were removed and examined. They had normal wear when compared to the Champion Check-A-Plug comparison card, and dark deposits in the electrode areas.

The carburetor was a Marvel Schebler, MA-4-5, PN-10-3859-1, SN-MF-V-AI. The carburetor was found not damaged. Rust and water were observed in the fuel inlet line. The inlet screen was wet with water and corrosion. The unit was disassembled, and the bowl was about half full of water and the bowl was also heavily corroded. The float and needle valve were intact and were free to move. 

Pilot Information

Certificate: Commercial; Private
Age: 54, Male
Airplane Rating(s): Single-engine Land
Seat Occupied: Front
Other Aircraft Rating(s): None
Restraint Used: 3-point
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: 12/17/2013
Occupational Pilot: No
Last Flight Review or Equivalent: 
Flight Time:   (Estimated) 2739 hours (Total, all aircraft), 3 hours (Total, this make and model), 15 hours (Last 90 days, all aircraft), 1 hours (Last 24 hours, all aircraft)

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: CESSNA
Registration: N5312G
Model/Series: 305A A
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 1951
Amateur Built: No
Airworthiness Certificate: Normal
Serial Number: 22746
Landing Gear Type: Tailwheel
Seats: 2
Date/Type of Last Inspection: 09/06/2015, Annual
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 2101 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection:
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 1965 Hours
Engine Manufacturer: CONT MOTOR
ELT: Installed, not activated
Engine Model/Series: O-470 SERIES
Registered Owner: MCFARLAND DAVID R
Rated Power: 230 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: LCH
Distance from Accident Site:
Observation Time: 1435 CDT
Direction from Accident Site:
Lowest Cloud Condition: Scattered / 4600 ft agl
Visibility:  10 Miles
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility (RVR): 
Wind Speed/Gusts: 10 knots /
Turbulence Type Forecast/Actual: /
Wind Direction: 90°
Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual: /
Altimeter Setting: 30.19 inches Hg
Temperature/Dew Point: 19°C / 7°C
Precipitation and Obscuration: 
Departure Point: Bell City, LA (52LA)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Destination: Sulpher, LA (UXL)
Type of Clearance: None
Departure Time: 1345 CDT
Type of Airspace:

Airport Information

Airport: Southland Field Airport (UXL)
Runway Surface Type: Asphalt
Airport Elevation: 10 ft
Runway Surface Condition: Dry
Runway Used: 15
IFR Approach: None
Runway Length/Width: 5001 ft / 75 ft
VFR Approach/Landing: Traffic Pattern 

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Minor
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: 1 None
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 1 Minor, 1 None
Latitude, Longitude:  30.131389, -93.376111 (est)

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