Saturday, April 27, 2019

Ryan Navion B, personal flight conducted under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91, N5327K: Accident occurred September 27, 2016 in Hurt, Pittsylvania County, Virginia

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

Additional Participating Entities:
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Richmond, Virginia
Continental Motors Inc; Mobile, Alabama 

Aviation Accident Factual Report - National Transportation Safety Board:

Investigation Docket - National Transportation Safety Board:

Ron Natalie

Ron said he was flying to North Carolina in his Ryan Navion B when he noticed the oil leaking and the "engine seized." He said he had to make an emergency landing in a field in Hurt, Virginia.

Location: Hurt, VA
Accident Number: ERA16LA333
Date & Time: 09/27/2016, 1745 EDT
Registration: N5327K
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Powerplant sys/comp malf/fail
Injuries: 1 None
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal 

On September 27, 2016, about 1745 eastern daylight time, a Ryan Navion B, N5327K, was substantially damaged during a forced landing, following a total loss of engine power while in cruise flight near Hurt, Virginia. The private pilot was not injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and no flight plan was filed for the personal flight, which was conducted under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91. The flight departed Culpeper Regional Airport (CJR), Culpeper, Virginia, about 1700, destined for Long Island Airport (NC26), Long Island, North Carolina.

According to the pilot, about 45 minutes into the flight, at an altitude of 3,000 feet mean sea level, the engine suddenly began to vibrate. He informed Roanoke Approach air traffic control (ATC) of his intent to try to land at the nearest airport, which was New London Airport (W90), Forest, Virginia. A few seconds later he heard a loud bang, the vibration worsened, smoke and oil emanated from the engine compartment, and the engine lost power as the propeller continued to windmill. The pilot then advised ATC that he would not be able to make the airport, and he then performed an emergency landing to a mowed hay field. During the landing rollout, the airplane struck and rolled through a post-and-wire fence resulting in substantial damage to the right wing.

Examination of the airplane by a Federal Aviation Administration inspector revealed that the right wing leading edge sustained substantial damage, and fence wire was wrapped around the propeller flange. The top left side of the engine crankcase was damaged, and there were holes in the crankcase near cylinder Nos. 6, 4 and 2. A connecting rod protruded through the hole near cylinder No. 4. No oil was present in the crankcase. A teardown examination of the engine was subsequently performed at the manufacturer's facility, under the supervision of a National Transportation Safety Board investigator. The examination revealed that the internal engine components exhibited heat distress consistent with a lack of lubrication. Further examination revealed that the oil temperature probe was safety wired, however it could be moved by hand. An air pressure hose was attached to the oil cooler and when 30 psi was applied, bubbles were noted around the crush washer seal of the oil temperature probe. Oil residue was also noted all over the oil cooler and surrounding area of the engine. See Figure 1. The oil temperature probe was removed, and the crush washer was found installed backwards.

Figure 1. Oil Temperature Probe

The temperature probe was considered an airframe item and was not installed by the engine manufacturer. The engine was delivered with a plug in the oil temperature probe port, and the installer could remove the plug and replace it with an oil temperature probe. A review of the 1951 Navion B Service Manual revealed no specific torque values for tightening the oil temperature probe. The maintenance manual for the accident engine provided a torque range for the oil temperature port plug (with crush washer), as 190 in/lbs to 210 in/lbs. The version of the manual in effect at the time of the accident did not specify the orientation of crush washers.

Maintenance records revealed that the airplane's most recent annual inspection occurred on September 16, 2016. At that time, the airplane had accrued a total of 4,488 flight hours, and the engine had accrued a total of 832 hours since overhaul.

Pilot Information

Certificate: Private
Age: 56, Male
Airplane Rating(s): Single-engine Land
Seat Occupied: Left
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 3 With Waivers/Limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: 04/18/2016
Occupational Pilot: No
Last Flight Review or Equivalent: 07/19/2016
Flight Time:   1014 hours (Total, all aircraft), 708 hours (Total, this make and model), 964 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft), 23 hours (Last 90 days, all aircraft), 1 hours (Last 30 days, all aircraft), 1 hours (Last 24 hours, all aircraft) 

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: RYAN
Registration: N5327K
Model/Series: NAVION B
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 1950
Amateur Built: No
Airworthiness Certificate: Normal
Serial Number: NAV-4-2227-B
Landing Gear Type: Retractable - Tricycle
Seats: 4
Date/Type of Last Inspection: 09/16/2016, Annual
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 2850 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection: 1 Hour
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 4488 Hours as of last inspection
Engine Manufacturer: Continental
ELT: C91A installed, not activated
Engine Model/Series: IO-550B
Registered Owner: On file
Rated Power: 300 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: KLYH, 938 ft msl
Distance from Accident Site: 16 Nautical Miles
Observation Time: 1754 EDT
Direction from Accident Site: 15°
Lowest Cloud Condition:
Visibility:  10 Miles
Lowest Ceiling: Broken / 7000 ft agl
Visibility (RVR):
Wind Speed/Gusts: 6 knots /
Turbulence Type Forecast/Actual: None / None
Wind Direction: 160°
Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual: N/A / N/A
Altimeter Setting: 29.89 inches Hg
Temperature/Dew Point: 24°C / 19°C
Precipitation and Obscuration: No Obscuration; No Precipitation
Departure Point: CULPEPER, VA (CJR)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Destination: LONG ISLAND, NC (NC26)
Type of Clearance: None
Departure Time: 1700 EDT
Type of Airspace: Class G

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 None
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 1 None
Latitude, Longitude:  37.055278, -79.295000 (est)

1 comment:

  1. Hi, I was the pilot here and the report from Continental is a complete fabrication and doesn't match the circumstances of the flight. Due to incompetence on the part of the NTSB, we will never know what happened to this engine. Suffice it to say from our independent examination, something stopped the oil flow rather severely, but it wasn't that it was pumped overboard prior to the failure.