Saturday, September 21, 2019

Diamond DA40NG Diamond Star, N292RA: Accident occurred September 15, 2019 near Chesapeake Regional Airport (KCPK), Norfolk, Virginia

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

Additional Participating Entity:
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Richmond, Virginia

Aviation Accident Preliminary Report - National Transportation Safety Board:

Location: Norfolk, VA
Accident Number: ERA19LA272
Date & Time: 09/15/2019, 1650 EDT
Registration: N292RA
Aircraft: DIAMOND DA40
Injuries: 1 Minor
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal

On September 15, 2019, about 1650 eastern daylight time, a Diamond DA40, N292RA, sustained substantial damage during a forced landing to a soybean field after a partial loss of engine power on takeoff from the Chesapeake Regional Airport (CPK), Norfolk, Virginia. The private pilot was not injured. The airplane was registered to and operated by the pilot 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.

The pilot stated that he completed three touch-and-go landings without incident and the airplane performed "completely normally." After the last landing, the pilot again initiated another takeoff and began to climb. When the airplane reached an altitude of 300 ft above the ground, and with no available runway remaining, the pilot heard a noise from under the engine cowling followed by a "near complete loss of engine thrust." The pilot realized that he was unable to maintain altitude and made a forced landing to a soybean field. The landing was smooth until the nose wheel struck a drainage ditch and spun the airplane to the right about 90°. The pilot secured the airplane and exited.

A postaccident examination of the airplane revealed the nose landing gear and lower engine cowling were damaged. The fuselage structure aft of the nose landing gear was substantially damaged and two of the three propeller blades had separated near the spinner. The upper and lower engine cowlings were removed and the induction coupling from the intercooler to the engine induction inlet was off, however both clamps securing the flexible coupling were intact and safety wired. The airplane wreckage was retained for further examination.

The pilot held a private pilot certificate with a rating for airplane single-engine land. His last Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) third-class medical certificate was issued on October 23, 2018. At that time, the pilot reported a total of 1,700 flight hours.

Weather at CPK at 1635 was reported as wind from 080° at 3 knots, visibility 7 miles, light rain, and clear skies. The temperature was 29°C, the dewpoint was 20°C, with a barometric altimeter setting of 30.08 inches of mercury. 

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: DIAMOND
Registration: N292RA
Model/Series: DA40
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: CPK, 18 ft msl
Observation Time: 1635 EDT
Distance from Accident Site:
Temperature/Dew Point: 29°C / 20°C
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: 3 knots / , 80°
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility:  7 Miles
Altimeter Setting: 30.08 inches Hg
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Departure Point: Norfolk, VA (CPK)
Destination: Norfolk, VA (CPK)

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Minor
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 1 Minor
Latitude, Longitude: 36.665556, -76.320556 (est)

CHESAPEAKE, Virginia  (WAVY) — A plane crashed near Chesapeake Regional Airport Sunday evening, according to emergency dispatchers.

Dispatch was notified about the crash just after 5 p.m. It happened in the 400 block of W Road.

Virginia State Police say there were no injuries reported.

Brenden Queen, a resident nearby, tells 10 On Your Side that the sound of the sirens led him out of his house to see what was going on.

“Decided to walk down here and realized it was a plane crash, so that got a little bit more serious than a car crash, because normally people don’t walk away from a plane crash,” Queen said.

“I can’t imagine what he was going through in them last moments just to land it safely and not hit a house especially right there or a tree,’ Queen added.

Even though troopers say no one was injured, Queen and others looked over into the soybean field where the small aircraft crashed and couldn’t help but think about what could have happened.

“You see it and you just wonder how close he was to it being a more severe situation,” Queen said.

Living so close to Chesapeake Regional Airport, Queen says he is used to seeing the big birds in the air.

“It’s just kind of one of those things that you don’t ever think is going to happen because you see planes flying everyday out here circling around practicing landing.”

Queen said he is just glad everyone walked away safely.

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