Saturday, August 24, 2019

Beechcraft F33A Bonanza, N80WH: Accident occurred August 23, 2019 in Hobe Sound, Martin County, Florida

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

Additional Participating Entities: 
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Miramar, Florida
Continental Aerospace Technologies; Mobile, Alabama 

Aviation Accident Preliminary Report - National Transportation Safety Board:

Location: Hobe Sound, FL
Accident Number: ERA19LA258
Date & Time: 08/23/2019, 0946 EDT
Registration: N80WH
Aircraft: Beech F33
Injuries: 3 None
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal

On August 23, 2019, about 0946 eastern daylight time, a Beech, F33A, N80WH, was substantially damaged when it impacted terrain during a forced landing near Hobe Sound, Florida. The private pilot and two passengers were not injured. The airplane was owned and operated by Magnolias Pride Inc. under the provisions of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and no flight plan was filed for the local personal flight, which originated from Witham Field (SUA), Stuart, Florida, about 0920.

According to the pilot, he performed a preflight inspection of the airplane at 0900 with no anomalies noted. He requested that the fuel tanks to be topped-off and recalled the oil quantity indicated 11.5 quarts. He departed SUA and proceeded southbound along the beach; he turned west near Jupiter, Florida and proceeded past US Highway 1 about 2 miles before turning north towards Hobe Sound. Shortly after the turn, the pilot heard a "tap, tap, tap, tap and a bang". He recalled the engine oil pressure gauge reading 0 and the primary flight display showed the wind from the east at 18 knots. He turned east and began looking for an appropriate landing location. The airplane was at a low altitude as it approached a roadway. The pilot turned off the electrical power, closed the throttle and turned the fuel selector off before flying under powerlines heading south. He subsequently performed a forced landing on the embankment next to the roadway and the airplane continued sliding towards the road where it came to rest.

The wreckage was retained for further examination.

According to Federal Aviation Administration airmen records, the pilot held a private pilot certificate with ratings for airplane single engine land and instrument airplane. At the time of the accident, the pilot held a third-class medical certificate issued on June 11, 2019. He reported 3,037 hours total flight experience and 2,339 hours experience in the accident airplane.

The 0947 weather observation at SUA, located about 12 miles northwest of the accident site, included: visibility 7 miles, scattered clouds at 1,500 ft above ground level, broken clouds at 2,300 ft above ground level and rain showers, wind from 110° at 12 knots, temperature 30°C, dew point 25°C, and an altimeter setting of 30.00 inches of mercury. 

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Beech
Registration: N80WH
Model/Series: F33 A
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Amateur Built: No
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: SUA, 18 ft msl
Observation Time: 0947 EDT
Distance from Accident Site: 11 Nautical Miles
Temperature/Dew Point: 30°C / 25°C
Lowest Cloud Condition: Scattered / 1500 ft agl
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: 12 knots / , 110°
Lowest Ceiling: Broken / 2300 ft agl
Visibility:  7 Miles
Altimeter Setting: 30 inches Hg
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Departure Point: Stuart, FL (SUA)
Destination: Stuart, FL (SUA)

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 None
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: 2 None
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 3 None
Latitude, Longitude: 27.032778, -80.111389 (est)

HOBE SOUND — A pilot guided his two passengers and single-engine plane to safety Friday when the need for an emergency landing prompted him to skid along the southbound and northbound lanes of U.S. 1, avoiding traffic.

No one was injured.

"He came just below the power lines and chain-link fence that was in the area and skidded onto U.S. 1," said Martin County sheriff's Lt. Yesenia Darde. "He skidded on the southbound side first and then over into the northbound side." 

Deputies received multiple calls about a plane crashing on U.S. 1 around 9:30 a.m., Darde said.

The plane was having trouble and made a belly landing on the highway south of Bridge Road with its gear up, said Christine Christofek, Sheriff's Office spokeswoman.

Three men were inside the Beechcraft F33A Bonanza. They were shaken but not injured. 

The hard landing damaged the plane's right wing near a tire, as well as its propellers, Darde said.

The pilot, a father from Stuart, was with his son, who lives in Colorado and a friend from Palm Beach County. Their names were not released Friday afternoon.

They left Witham Field in Stuart and were planning to fly to Vero Beach Regional Airport, Darde said.

Around 9:30 a.m., the pilot realized he had oil pressure problems and had to land the plane.

Darde said the National Transportation Safety Board is investigating the incident. 

Martin County Fire Rescue workers and Martin County sheriff's deputies were on scene until 1:15 p.m. while northbound and southbound lanes of U.S. 1 were closed a short distance south of Bridge Road. 

The plane was towed and the lanes reopened shortly after 1 p.m. 

No citations were issued. 

"I was just surprised at how well (the pilot) was able to retain control," Darde said. "Even though he landed on Federal Highway, him and his occupants and our motorists were lucky that no one was injured."

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  1. GOOD LANDING !,... Sorry to see that nice bird damaged but all walked away, so much better than most others I read about here on Kathryn's report ............... Good job.

  2. No citations were issued, HOORAY! I'm so glad engine failure isn't against the law. Seriously, that was some great flying, job well done!

  3. When on the highway, airplanes are subject to standard traffic laws. Could have been ticketed for over-width, speeding, failure to maintain control, obscured/missing license plates, etc. I am joking, of course. Damage appears moderate.