Saturday, September 21, 2019

Loss of Engine Power (Total): Piper PA-46-350P Malibu Mirage, N218MW; accident occurred September 15, 2019 in Gulf of Mexico

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

Additional Participating Entity: 

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Baton Rouge, Louisiana

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

Investigation Docket - National Transportation Safety Board: https://dms.ntsb.gov/pubdms 

https://registry.faa.gov/N218MW

Location: Gulf of Mexico, GM 
Accident Number: CEN19TA321
Date & Time: 09/15/2019, 1146 CDT
Registration: N218MW
Aircraft: Piper PA46
Aircraft Damage: Destroyed
Defining Event: Loss of engine power (total)
Injuries: 1 None
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal 

On September 15, 2019, at 1146 central daylight time, a Piper PA-46-350P, N218MW, lost engine power while maneuvering over the Gulf of Mexico, and the pilot was forced to ditch. The private pilot was not injured. The airplane was registered to and operated by Mailworks, Inc., Spring Valley, California, under Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 as a personal flight. Visual meteorological conditions existed near the accident site at the time of the accident, and the flight was operated on a visual flight rules flight plan. The flight originated at 0830 eastern daylight time from Space Coast Regional Airport (TIX), Titusville, Florida, and was en route to Ozona Municipal Airport (OZA), Ozona, Texas. His final destination was Gillespie Field Airport (SEE), El Cajon, California.

According to the pilot's accident report, he departed TIX with 140 gallons of fuel. After crossing Gulfport (GPT), Mississippi's Terminal Radar Service Area (TRSA) at 10,500 ft, he initiated a slow descent over Boothville, Louisiana, and proceeded southbound towards the mouth of the Mississippi River, descending to 1,500 ft. He then configured the airplane for climb. The engine did not respond to the application of power and the airplane began losing altitude. After going through the emergency checklist, he was unable to restore engine power, and declared an emergency to Houston air route traffic control center (ARTCC) and on frequency 121.5 mHz. He also activated the emergency locator transmitter (ELT) prior to ditching.

After ditching, the pilot put on his life jacket, exited the airplane, and remained on its wing until it sank. About an hour later, a U.S. Coast Guard helicopter rescued the pilot and transported him to a hospital in New Orleans, Louisiana. He was discharged a few hours later. The airplane has not been recovered.

Pilot Information

Certificate: Private
Age: 63, Male
Airplane Rating(s): Single-engine Land
Seat Occupied: Left
Other Aircraft Rating(s): None
Restraint Used:
Instrument Rating(s): Airplane
Second Pilot Present: No
Instructor Rating(s): None
Toxicology Performed: No
Medical Certification: Class 3 Without Waivers/Limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: 12/13/2017
Occupational Pilot: No
Last Flight Review or Equivalent: 05/04/2019
Flight Time:  (Estimated) 3500 hours (Total, all aircraft), 2000 hours (Total, this make and model), 3400 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft), 14 hours (Last 90 days, all aircraft), 14 hours (Last 30 days, all aircraft), 3 hours (Last 24 hours, all aircraft)

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Piper
Registration: N218MW
Model/Series: PA46-350P
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 2010
Amateur Built: No
Airworthiness Certificate: Normal
Serial Number: 4636470
Landing Gear Type: Retractable - Tricycle
Seats: 6
Date/Type of Last Inspection: 04/26/2019, Annual
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 4340 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection: 30 Hours
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 1116 Hours at time of accident
Engine Manufacturer: Lycoming
ELT: Installed, not activated
Engine Model/Series: TIO-540-AE2A
Registered Owner: On file
Rated Power: 350 hp
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:
Distance from Accident Site:
Observation Time:
Direction from Accident Site:
Lowest Cloud Condition: Few
Visibility:  20 Miles
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility (RVR):
Wind Speed/Gusts: 16 knots /
Turbulence Type Forecast/Actual:
Wind Direction: 30°
Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual:
Altimeter Setting:
Temperature/Dew Point:
Precipitation and Obscuration:
Departure Point: Titusville, FL (TIX)
Type of Flight Plan Filed:
Destination: Ozona, TX (OZA)
Type of Clearance: None
Departure Time: 0830 EDT
Type of Airspace: Class G 

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 None
Aircraft Damage: Destroyed
Passenger Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 1 None
Latitude, Longitude: 28.866944, -89.302222
=====
Location: Gulf of Mexico
Accident Number: CEN19LA321
Date & Time: 09/15/2019, 1146 CDT
Registration: N218MW
Aircraft: Piper PA-46
Injuries: 1 None
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal

On September 15, 2019, at 1146 central daylight time, a Piper PA-46-350P, N218MW, lost engine power while maneuvering over the Gulf of Mexico, and the pilot was forced to ditch. The private pilot was not injured. The airplane was registered to and operated by Mailworks, Inc., Spring Valley, California, under Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 as a personal flight. Visual meteorological conditions existed near the accident site at the time of the accident, and the flight was operated on a visual flight rules flight plan. The flight originated from Space Coast Regional Airport (TIX), Titusville, Florida, and was en route to Mathis Field (SJT), San Angelo, Texas.

Preliminary information indicates the pilot had been cruising at 16,000 ft when he decided to descend and take some photographs. While maneuvering at 2,500 ft, the engine lost all power. The pilot ditched near an oil platform and was rescued by a Coast Guard helicopter. The airplane sank and has not been recovered.

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Piper
Registration: N218MW
Model/Series: PA-46-350P
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Amateur Built: No
Operator: Mailworks Inc
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None 

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site:
Condition of Light:
Observation Facility, Elevation:
Observation Time:
Distance from Accident Site:
Temperature/Dew Point:
Lowest Cloud Condition:
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction:
Lowest Ceiling:
Visibility:  
Altimeter Setting:
Type of Flight Plan Filed:
Departure Point: Titusville, FL (TIX)
Destination: San Angelo, TX (SJT)

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 None
Aircraft Damage: Destroyed
Passenger Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 1 None
Latitude, Longitude: 28.866944, -89.302222

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

Something isn't right here...you just wouldn't routinely descend from that altitude to 2,500 ft to take some photos...We'll see.

Anonymous said...

Probably initial report confusion (the report does say "may contain errors":
1. 16,000 is an IFR altitude, report says VFR flight plan.
2. Flight tracking websites tend to show all IFR & VFR flight plans, obviously no flight plan filed.

Anonymous said...

@anonymmous

You can fly VFR up to 18,000 feet.

Anonymous said...

True (up to, not including 18,000) Not to split hairs, but VFR altitudes are "X + 500". 16,500 would be a westbound VFR altitude. 16,000 is IFR only.