Sunday, September 22, 2019

Cessna 208B Grand Caravan, N895SF: Accident occurred September 20, 2019 at Pepperell Airport (26MA), Middlesex County, Massachusetts

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

Additional Participating Entity:
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Burlington, Massachusetts

Aviation Accident Preliminary Report - National Transportation Safety Board:

Location: Pepperell, MA
Accident Number: ERA19TA278
Date & Time: 09/20/2019, 1230 EDT
Registration: N895SF
Aircraft: Cessna 208
Injuries: 2 None
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Skydiving

On September 20, 2019, about 1230 central daylight time, a Cessna 208B, N895SF, was substantially damaged during a hard landing at Pepperell Airport (26MA), Pepperell, Massachusetts. The commercial pilot and passenger were not injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and no flight plan was filed for the skydiving flight that departed at 1215. The airplane was privately owned and operated under the provisions of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91.

According to the pilot, he was flying 10 skydivers and one passenger up to an altitude of 10,500 feet mean sea level. After the skydivers departed the airplane, the pilot returned to the airport and made a normal approach to land on runway 24. When the airplane was about 10-15 feet above the runway, he thought he encountered a sudden downdraft and the airplane just "dropped" out of the air and landed hard on the grass runway. The nose landing gear fractured off as the airplane slid to the right side of the runway and crossed the asphalt parallel runway. The airplane then contacted a small tree on the right wing that spun the airplane around. The left wing then contacted the ground and bent the last three feet of the wing tip up. The pilot stated there were no mechanical anomalies with the airplane at the time of the accident.

Examination of the airplane by a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) inspector revealed that the left-wing tip was bent up from contact with the ground. The wing spar was bent, and the nose landing gear was fractured off.

The single-engine, high-wing airplane was built in 1988, and equipped with a Pratt and Whitney PT6, 675 horsepower engine. The most recent 100-hour inspection was completed on September 5, 2019. At the time of accident, the airframe total time was 18,426.0 hours. The engine total time was 18,240.7 hours. The airplane flew 22.6 hours since the last 100-hour inspection.

The pilot held a commercial pilot certificate, with ratings for airplane single-engine land, and airplane multi-engine land. He also held a flight instructor certificate with ratings for airplane single-engine and airplane multi-engine. His most recent FAA second class medical certificate was issued on June 4, 2019. He reported 3,837 total hours of flight experience at the time of the accident. A total of 400 hours were in this make and model.

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Cessna
Registration: N895SF
Model/Series: 208 B
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Amateur Built: No
Operator:On file 
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site:
Condition of Light:
Observation Facility, Elevation: KASH, 200 ft msl
Observation Time: 1356 UTC
Distance from Accident Site: 5 Nautical Miles
Temperature/Dew Point: 17°C / 9°C
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: Calm / ,
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility:  10 Miles
Altimeter Setting: 30.2 inches Hg
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Departure Point: Pepperell, MA (26MA)
Destination: Pepperell, MA (26MA)

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 None
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: 1 None
Aircraft Fire: On-Ground
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 2 None
Latitude, Longitude: 42.696944, -71.548889

PEPPERELL (CBS) — A small skydiving plane crashed at Skydive Pepperell around 12:30 p.m. Friday. Two people were in the plane at the time but they were not injured, police said.

The plane could be seen in the brush about 50 feet away from the runway at the skydive-only airport.

“A preliminary investigation indicates that Cessna 208B Grand Caravan was attempting to land following a skydiving run when its nose struck the runway, causing it to leave the pavement and come to rest in the grass,” said police.

The Federal Aviation Administration will also investigate the cause of the crash.

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