Tuesday, August 20, 2019

Beech H35 Bonanza, N5410D: Accident occurred August 17, 2019 near Sierra Blanca Regional Airport (KSRR), Ruidoso, Lincoln County, New Mexico

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

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Albuquerque

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


Accident Number: WPR19LA223
Date & Time: 08/17/2019, 1308 MDT
Registration: N5410D
Aircraft: Beech 35
Injuries: 2 Serious
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal 

On August 17, 2019, about 1308 mountain daylight time, a Beechcraft H35 airplane, N5410D, was substantially damaged following impact with terrain shortly after takeoff from Sierra Blanca Regional Airport (SRR), Ruidoso, New Mexico. The pilot and pilot rated passenger were seriously injured. The airplane was registered to a private individual and operated by the pilot as a Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 personal flight. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed for the flight and a flight plan was not filed. The flight was originating at the time of the accident.

A witness reported that after takeoff, about 100 ft above ground level, the airplane started to descend in a level pitch attitude. The airplane subsequently descended into a ravine where it impacted the terrain.

At 1255, the automated weather observation system located at SRR reported wind 340° at 12 knots, gusting to 17 knots, sky clear, visibility 10 miles, temperature 29° C, dew point 4° C, and an altimeter setting of 30.21 inches of mercury. The SRR airport elevation is 6,810 ft mean sea level (msl). Calculated density altitude was about 9,700 ft msl at the time of the accident.

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Beech
Registration: N5410D
Model/Series: 35 H35
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Amateur Built: No
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site:
Condition of Light:
Observation Facility, Elevation: KSRR, 6810 ft msl
Observation Time: 1855 UTC
Distance from Accident Site: 1 Nautical Miles
Temperature/Dew Point: 29°C / 4°C
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: 12 knots / 17 knots, 340°
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility:  10 Miles
Altimeter Setting: 30.21 inches Hg
Type of Flight Plan Filed:
Departure Point:

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 2 Serious
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 2 Serious
Latitude, Longitude: 33.466667, -105.535000 

A plane crash at Ruidoso's Sierra Blanca Regional Airport caused two people to be airlifted to medical facilities Saturday.

At 1 p.m., a Bonanza single engine aircraft with two passengers on board crashed after takeoff less than a mile off airport property, according to information from Ruidoso Village public information officer Kerry Gladden.

The pilot, Michael Bletsch, was airlifted by medical helicopter to University of New Mexico hospital in Albuquerque and the passenger, Joshua Cotton, was flown to University Medical Center in El Paso, said Sean Parker, airport director.

Both underwent multiple surgeries but are expected to make full recoveries, he said family members reported to him.

The men are from Richmond, Texas.

"They had just arrived the night before and were going sightseeing around the county," Parker said.

"They took off on runway 3-0 to the north, but the plane was not able to climb and make altitude," he said. "It crashed in a small ravine a half mile from the airport fence on the other side of Airport Road/N.M. 220.

"Two airport employees observed the plane take off and once they heard the crash noise, they immediately went to the airport fire station, got their bunker gear on and responded to the area of the crash."

Ruidoso police officers were at the department's shooting range also across the highway from the airport, Parker said. They heard the crash noise and radio chatter and arrived at the scene first.

By that time, the two occupants of the aircraft managed to exit the plane on their own power and were lying on the aircraft's right wing, Parker said.

Fortunately, the plane did not catch fire, he said.

The next to arrive was the airport fire department crew, followed by the Lincoln County Emergency Medical Services, the Ruidoso Fire Department, the Bonito Volunteer Fire Department, the Lincoln County Sheriff's Department and the New Mexico State Police.

"As I arrived on scene, the first patient already was in the ambulance on the airport tarmac awaiting the helicopter," Parker said.

"I assisted with the second patient getting him up the hill to the ambulance. After that, we released all departments, except state police and airport fire."

One state officer and one firefighter stayed with aircraft overnight until the investigative team with the Federal Aviation Administration arrived at 10 a.m., Sunday, he said.

The team completed its investigation by 12:30 p.m. and released the aircraft to the owners, whose insurance carrier contacted the recovery company.

"(That company) arrived from Phoenix (Arizona) about 11 a.m. Monday and the plane has been removed," Parker said.

The airport was closed for about two hours, reopening at 3 p.m. the same day, an airport representative said.

Original article ➤ https://www.ruidosonews.com

RUIDOSO, New Mexico — A plane crash near Ruidoso airport left two people injured Saturday afternoon.

Ruidoso officials said the single-engine plane crashed shortly after taking off from Sierra Blanca Regional Airport.

The airport closed for a few hours as a result of the accident and both passengers were taken to an El Paso hospital to be treated.

The National Transportation Safety Board is currently investigating what caused the aircraft to go down.

Story and video ➤ https://www.kob.com


  1. Houston area elevation less than 100'. KSRR elevation 6814.

    1. Why dont you google the H model POH and read the performance charts. This plane had an I0470 too. Well within performance with safety margin. 1100 hour IFR\multi rated pilot with plenty of mountain time.

  2. Wonder if it had the original PS-5C and when was the last time it was overhauled?

  3. https://www.flight-mechanic.com/stromberg-ps-carburetor/

  4. This particular aircraft had been converted to fuel injection years ago. The previous owner is a close friend of mine and I personally flew the aircraft many times.