Sunday, August 11, 2019

Loss of Engine Power (Total): Air Tractor AT-301, N3164K; accident occurred August 29, 2018 in Partridge, Reno County, Kansas

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

Additional Participating Entity:

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

Aviation Accident Factual Report - National Transportation Safety Board:

Investigation Docket - National Transportation Safety Board:

Location: Partridge, KS
Accident Number: CEN18LA356
Date & Time: 08/29/2018, 1323 CDT
Registration: N3164K
Aircraft: Air Tractor AT 301
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Loss of engine power (total)
Injuries:1 None 
Flight Conducted Under: Part 137: Agricultural

On August 29, 2018, about 1323 central daylight time, an Air Tractor AT-301 airplane, N3164K, was substantially damaged during a forced landing following a loss of engine power near Partridge, Kansas. The pilot was not injured. The airplane was registered to and operated by Ag Air Services Inc. as a Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 137 aerial application flight. Day visual meteorological conditions prevailed. The flight was not operated on a flight plan. The local flight originated from the Hutchison Regional Airport (HUT) about 1220.

The pilot reported that he had been flying for about 1 hour and was returning to the airport when the engine lost power. The airplane was about 1,000 ft above ground level (agl) at the time. He noted that the engine regained power momentarily twice – for about 3 seconds each time – when he used the manual fuel pump. However, the airplane continued to lose altitude and he abandoned further restart attempts to focus on the forced landing. He attempted to land on a road, but he was unable to properly align the airplane's flight path with the remaining altitude. The airplane aerodynamically stalled about 20 ft agl, contacted the road, and bounced before coming to rest in an adjacent agricultural field. The airplane sustained damage to the left wing.

The operator recovered the airplane from the accident site. He stated that 29 gallons of fuel was drained from the airplane during recovery.

A postrecovery engine examination performed by Federal Aviation Administration inspectors did not reveal any anomalies consistent with a preaccident failure or malfunction. The engine driven fuel pump was removed and tested. It operated normally when operated with an electric drill. The airframe fuel screens were intact and free of debris or sediment. The airplane was not equipped with an electric fuel pump. The only backup fuel pump was the manual pump.

Pilot Information

Certificate: Commercial
Age: 24, Male
Airplane Rating(s): Single-engine Land
Seat Occupied: Single
Other Aircraft Rating(s): None
Restraint Used: 4-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: 12/11/2017
Occupational Pilot: Yes
Last Flight Review or Equivalent: 12/26/2017
Flight Time:   548 hours (Total, all aircraft), 208215 hours (Total, this make and model), 512 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft), 207 hours (Last 90 days, all aircraft), 105 hours (Last 30 days, all aircraft), 6 hours (Last 24 hours, all aircraft)

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Air Tractor
Registration: N3164K
Model/Series: AT 301 No Series
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 1984
Amateur Built: No
Airworthiness Certificate: Restricted
Serial Number: 301-0535
Landing Gear Type: Tailwheel
Seats: 1
Date/Type of Last Inspection: 03/20/2018, Annual
Certified Max Gross Wt.:
Time Since Last Inspection: 200 Hours
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 6578.2 Hours at time of accident
Engine Manufacturer: Pratt & Whitney
ELT: Not installed
Engine Model/Series: R1340-AN1
Registered Owner: Phoenix Equipment LLC
Rated Power: 600 hp
Operator: Ag Air Service 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: HUT, 1543 ft msl
Distance from Accident Site: 12 Nautical Miles
Observation Time: 1352 CDT
Direction from Accident Site: 60°
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Visibility:  10 Miles
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility (RVR):
Wind Speed/Gusts: 5 knots /
Turbulence Type Forecast/Actual: /
Wind Direction: Variable
Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual: /
Altimeter Setting: 30.09 inches Hg
Temperature/Dew Point: 27°C / 18°C
Precipitation and Obscuration: No Obscuration; No Precipitation
Departure Point: Hutchinson, KS (HUT)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Destination: Hutchinson, KS (HUT)
Type of Clearance: None
Departure Time: 1230 CDT
Type of Airspace: Class G

Airport Information

Airport: Hutchinson Regional (HUT)
Runway Surface Type: N/A
Airport Elevation: 1543 ft
Runway Surface Condition: Vegetation
Runway Used: N/A
IFR Approach: None
Runway Length/Width:
VFR Approach/Landing: Forced Landing

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:  37.979444, -98.105000 (est)

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