Tuesday, November 05, 2019

TangoGyro Tango2, N875FV: Fatal accident occurred November 04, 2019 near Polk County Airport (4A4), Cedartown, Georgia

The NTSB traveled to the scene of this accident.

Additional Participating Entity:
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Atlanta, Georgia

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


Location: Cedartown, GA
Accident Number: ERA20FA029
Date & Time: 11/04/2019, 1200 EST
Registration: N875FV
Aircraft: PAVEL Tango2
Injuries: 1 Fatal
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Flight Test 

On November 4, 2019, about 1200 eastern standard time, an experimental amateur-built Tango2 gyroplane, N875FV, was substantially damaged when it impacted a field near Cedartown, Georgia. The sport pilot was fatally injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and no flight plan was filed for the local flight, which originated from Polk County Airport (4A4), Cedartown, Georgia, around 1130. The test flight was conducted under the provisions of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91.

According to a friend of the pilot, the pilot was performing a test flight in order to mitigate a vibration in the gyroplane. The friend watched the pilot add fuel to the gyroplane, check the oil, and perform part of the preflight inspection before the friend continued working on other things around his hangar. Then, the friend watched the gyroplane takeoff, fly out of sight, and noted no issues with the gyroplane. He knew that the flight test would last about 15 minutes, so after 30 minutes had passed, he alerted authorities and went to look for the pilot. The wreckage was located later that day around 1330.

According to Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) airmen records, the pilot held a sport pilot certificate with endorsements for gyroplane and weight-shift control land. He did not possess an FAA medical certificate, nor was he required to have one. According to a friend of the pilot, he had about 200-300 hours of flight time in the same make and model as the accident gyroplane.

The two-seat tandem, fixed tricycle gear, composite gyroplane was assembled from a kit and issued an FAA experimental airworthiness certificate in 2019. It was powered by a Yamaha 8GL-01, 130-horsepower engine, equipped with an Aero Prop three-blade, fixed pitch, composite pusher propeller and a two-blade aluminum rotor. Review of the maintenance records revealed that the gyroplane's most recent condition inspection was completed on October 20, 2019. At that time, the airframe and engine had accumulated 0 total hours of operation. The hobbs meter was located in the wreckage and noted 4.8 hours of total time.

The 1335 recorded weather observation at Paulding Northwest Atlanta Airport (PUJ), Dallas, Georgia, which was about 14 miles to the southeast of the accident location, included wind from 120° at 8 knots, visibility 10 miles, clear skies, temperature 13° C, dew point 03° C; and an altimeter setting of 30.20 inches of mercury.

The main wreckage was located in a cotton field, at an elevation of 853 ft above mean sea level. The gyroplane impacted the field, and then came to rest inverted about 15 ft beyond the initial impact point. The debris path was oriented on about a 270° magnetic heading. All major components of the gyroplane were located in the vicinity of the main wreckage. There was no evidence of post impact fire and an odor of fuel was noted at the accident site.

The forward right section of the fuselage was impact damaged and crushed. The windscreens were impact separated and the pieces were located in the vicinity of the main wreckage. The rudder remained attached to the fuselage and the right side was impact damaged. Rudder control continuity was confirmed from the rudder to the pedals in the cockpit. The cyclic controls remained attached to their respective attach points in the cockpit. The walking beam remained attached along the keel and was bent. Cyclic control continuity was confirmed from the cockpit control to the main rotor head. Throttle control continuity was confirmed from the throttle control in the cockpit to the engine.

The main rotor mast was impact damaged and bent aft. The main rotor would rotate 360° when moved by hand and the pitch and roll pivot bolts were secure. The main rotor drive gear where the main rotor brake contacted the gear was examined and minor wear was noted. One of the main rotor blades was impact separated and located about 15 ft from the main wreckage and the cap was impact separated. The separated blade exhibited impact damage, was bent in the aft direction, and rotational scoring was noted. The other rotor blade remained partially attached to the main rotor head. It was bent in the positive direction, exhibited rotational scoring, the cap remained attached, and was partially bent aft. The two shims that were added to each blade to reduce the pitch angle of the main rotor blades were located in the vicinity of the wreckage.

The engine remained attached to the airframe through all engine mounts. All 3 spark plugs were removed, exhibited normal wear, and no anomalies were noted. The throttle body was examined and no anomalies were noted. The cylinders were examined with a lighted boroscope and no anomalies were noted. The valve cover was removed to facilitate examination. The camshafts were examined with no anomalies noted. In addition, the valve timing chain was not seated on the two camshaft gears. A section of the valve cover that covered the camshaft gears was impact separated and located in the vicinity of the main wreckage. Crankshaft continuity was confirmed when the No. 3 piston was pushed down and the propeller moved. The oil filter was removed from the engine, examined, and no anomalies were noted. Coolant was noted in the radiator. Fuel was noted in the fuel rail. The fuel injectors were removed, examined, and were not obstructed.

All 3 propeller blades remained attached to the propeller hub. Propeller blade A was fractured but remained attached to the hub. The leading and trailing edge of the blade were split. Leading edge damage was also noted on the blade. Blade B remained attached to the hub and no anomalies were noted. Blade C remained attached to the hub and the leading edge exhibited damage. The propeller would rotate when moved by hand. In addition, the propeller gear clutch would rotate when the propeller was rotated by hand.

The vibration tester unit that was being used by the pilot during the flight was not located. However, the cables and sensors remained attached to the airframe and rotor head. Two of the three connection points remained intact and the third connection point was separated. In addition, the excess cable was located in the aft seat.

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: PAVEL
Registration: N875FV
Model/Series: Tango2
Aircraft Category: Gyroplane
Amateur Built: Yes
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: PUJ, 1290 ft msl
Observation Time: 1335 EST
Distance from Accident Site: 14 Nautical Miles
Temperature/Dew Point: 13°C / 3°C
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: 8 knots / , 120°
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility:  10 Miles
Altimeter Setting: 30.2 inches Hg
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Departure Point: Cedartown, GA (4A4)
Destination: Cedartown, GA (4A4)

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Fatal
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 1 Fatal
Latitude, Longitude: 34.043889, -85.177222

Those who may have information that might be relevant to the National Transportation Safety Board investigation may contact them by email eyewitnessreport@ntsb.gov, and any friends and family who want to contact investigators about the accident should email assistance@ntsb.gov. 

"Alexander Vagner had an untimely passing on November 4th, 2019.  

Alexander left for a test flight and unfortunately never made it back to the hanger. 

We, his family, mourns in his unexpected passing.  

Alexander was such a devoted and passionate husband of 43 years,  loving father, and grandfather of 3 beautiful grandchildren. 

Alexander was very well known in the Gyro community for being such a great person who showed his passion and gratitude for flying.  He is loved by all and will never be forgotten by any means. 

We find peace in knowing that he passed doing what he loved to do. 

We ask for your help in covering funeral cost as this was by all means, unexpected. 

We appreciate your kindness in advance during this very difficult and emotional time."

Read more here: https://www.gofundme.com

CEDARTOWN – One person was killed Monday when an experimental aircraft crashed in a cotton field in the 2600 block of Collard Valley Road.

Chuck Beavers, the Polk County airport manager, said the craft is an experimental gyroplane that had taken off from the airport around 11:30 a.m. on a test flight.

Polk County Coroner Tony Brazier reported that Alexander Vagner, 55, of a Cumming address, was the lone victim in the crash. Vagner’s body will be taken to the Georgia Bureau of investigation Crime Lab for autopsy.

Brazier said officials at the Polk County Airport began a search with a plane in the air after Vagner failed to return from his test flight. County police and sheriff’s deputies also joined airport personnel in a search from the ground.

It was local farmers who found the aircraft crashed in a cotton field southeast of the airport around 1:30 pm. Brazier pronounced Vagner dead at the scene at 1:45 p.m., not long after his arrival with emergency personnel.

Original article can be found here ➤ https://www.mdjonline.com

A pilot was killed in an experimental amateur-built TangoGyro Tango2 crash in Polk County Monday afternoon.

The aircraft landed in a cotton field between Collard Valley and Wyatt Road just after 1 pm.

The Federal Aviation Administration has been called in to investigate the fixed=wing, single engine amateur built aircraft.

The plane had taken off from the Polk County Airport just before crashing less than two miles away.

The identity of the pilot has yet to be released pending notification of next of kin.

Original article can be found here ➤ https://coosavalleynews.com

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