Tuesday, June 18, 2019

Low Altitude Operation / Event: Air Tractor AT-402A, N5044Y; accident occurred June 17, 2019 in Liberal, Seward County, Kansas

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Wichita, Kansas

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

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


Location: Liberal, KS
Accident Number: GAA19CA352
Date & Time: 06/17/2019, 1141 CDT
Registration: N5044Y
Aircraft: Air Tractor AT402
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Low altitude operation/event
Injuries: 1 None
Flight Conducted Under: Part 137: Agricultural 

The pilot reported that during an agricultural application flight, his attention was focused, "on a shed and electrical lines." While maneuvering to the north at a low altitude, the airplane's right wing collided with an unseen galvanized windmill tower. He reported that the tower had blended into the gray sky. He attempted to control the airplane, but it descended and collided with the ground.

The airplane sustained substantial damage to both wings and the fuselage.

The pilot reported that there were no mechanical malfunctions or failures with the airplane that would have precluded normal operation.

Pilot Information

Certificate: Flight Instructor; Commercial
Age: 61, Male
Airplane Rating(s): Multi-engine Land; Single-engine Land
Seat Occupied: Single
Other Aircraft Rating(s): None
Restraint Used:
Instrument Rating(s): Airplane
Second Pilot Present: No
Instructor Rating(s): Airplane Multi-engine; Airplane Single-engine; Instrument Airplane
Toxicology Performed: No
Medical Certification: Class 2 Without Waivers/Limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: 04/05/2019
Occupational Pilot: Yes
Last Flight Review or Equivalent: 01/20/2018
Flight Time:  (Estimated) 8171 hours (Total, all aircraft), 746 hours (Total, this make and model), 8016 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft), 74 hours (Last 90 days, all aircraft), 42 hours (Last 30 days, all aircraft), 1 hours (Last 24 hours, all aircraft) 

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Air Tractor
Registration: N5044Y
Model/Series: AT402 A
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 1997
Amateur Built: No
Airworthiness Certificate: Restricted
Serial Number: 402A-1036
Landing Gear Type: Tailwheel
Seats: 1
Date/Type of Last Inspection: 04/03/2019, Annual
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 7000 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection:
Engines: 1 Turbo Prop
Airframe Total Time: 6958.8 Hours at time of accident
Engine Manufacturer: Pratt & Whitney
ELT: Not installed
Engine Model/Series: PT6A-11AG
Registered Owner: Crop-Serv Inc.
Rated Power: 550 hp
Operator: Crop-Serv Inc.
Operating Certificate(s) Held: Agricultural Aircraft (137) 

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: Visual Conditions
Condition of Light: Day
Observation Facility, Elevation: KLBL, 2873 ft msl
Distance from Accident Site: 2 Nautical Miles
Observation Time: 0656 UTC
Direction from Accident Site: 281°
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Visibility:  10 Miles
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility (RVR):
Wind Speed/Gusts:  4 knots /
Turbulence Type Forecast/Actual:
Wind Direction: 220°
Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual:
Altimeter Setting: 30.01 inches Hg
Temperature/Dew Point: 17°C / 15°C
Precipitation and Obscuration: No Obscuration; No Precipitation
Departure Point: Meade, KS (MEJ)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Destination: Meade, KS (MEJ)
Type of Clearance: None
Departure Time: 1100 CDT
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: 37.043056, -100.921111 (est)

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