Wednesday, December 18, 2019

Abnormal Runway Contact: Piper PA-28-140 Cherokee, N1568J; accident occurred May 23, 2019 near Aero Country Airport (T31) McKinney, Collin County, Texas

Airplane Wreckage.
Federal Aviation Administration

Drag Mark.
Federal Aviation Administration

Propeller Cuts.
Federal Aviation Administration

Recovered Aircraft Wreckage.
Lycoming Engines

Lycoming Engines

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

Additional Participating Entities:

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Irving, Texas
Piper Aircraft, Inc; Vero Beach, Florida
Lycoming Engines; Williamsport, Pennsylvania

Aviation Accident Factual Report - National Transportation Safety Board:

Investigation Docket - National Transportation Safety Board:

Location: McKinney, TX
Accident Number: CEN19LA150
Date & Time: 05/23/2019, 1710 CDT
Registration: N1568J
Aircraft: Piper PA28
Aircraft Damage: Destroyed
Defining Event: Abnormal runway contact
Injuries: 2 Serious, 1 Minor
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal 

On May 23, 2019, about 1710 central daylight time, a Piper PA-28-140 airplane, N1568J, impacted a residential house during a go-around attempt at the Aero Country Airport (T31), McKinney, Texas. The pilot and pilot-rated passenger received serious injuries and a child in the residence received minor injuries. The airplane was destroyed. The airplane was registered to and operated by a private individual under the provisions of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 as personal flight. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the accident, and a flight plan had not been filed. The local flight departed T31 about 1610.

The pilot reported that she planned on a 40-minute local flight, and they departed runway 17 with no problems. She reported the winds were from 160° to 165°.

When they returned, she entered the left downwind for runway 17; selecting the first or second notch of flaps as she turned from base to the final leg. The windsock still showed the wind from about 160°, and she added that nothing felt any different than the departure. She said she had done five take-off and landings the two previous days without any problems, and the wind was stronger then. She said the descent remained smooth and normal, and as they were about to touch down, they were "pushed down hard to the surface and quickly sucked back up." She advanced the throttle for a go-around and as they gained altitude, the airplane was hit with a gust of wind from the east. The pilot added that one moment they were heading 170°, and the next they were heading 290°. She added that she was unable to recover the altitude or turn the airplane back to the south.

The airplane impacted a storage facility and a house on the west side of the airport. The responding Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) inspector noted substantial damage to the airplane's fuselage, including the cabin area, and both wings. The right wing's fuel tank was breached during the accident, and about 13 gallons of fuel was recovered from the left-wing fuel tank. There was not a post-crash fire.

Several witnesses reported seeing the airplane during the accident flight. One witness reported that the wind was out of the south about 25 knots. The witness observed the airplane bounce, then bounce again, before power was applied for a go-around. He added that it looked like the airplane was being "bounced around pretty good", as the airplane slowly climbed then veered right. The airplane descended as it disappeared behind a hangar.

The pilot rated passenger, after she was released from the hospital, was unable to remember any details of the flight.

At 1653, the automated weather reporting station at the McKinney National Airport (TKI), located 8 miles east of T31, recorded wind 140° at 11 knots and gusting to 23 knots.

At 1651, the automated weather reporting station at the Addison Airport (ADS), located 15 miles south of T31, recorded wind 140° at 16 knots and gusting to 29 knots.

The airplane wreckage was recovered from the site and transported to a salvage facility where the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) Investigator-in-Charge, the FAA inspector, and technical representatives from the engine and airframe manufacturers conducted an examination. For transport purposes, the fuselage was cut just aft of the cabin area, and both wings, and engine were separated. Control continuity from the control column to the control surfaces was limited due to impact damage to the front panel/cabin area and fuselage/wing damage. However, control connections were observed, and no pre-impact discrepancies were noted with control continuity. The flap handle located between the two front seats was found in the first notch position. The airplane's emergency locator transmitter, located in the aft section of the fuselage, was found in the "off" position.

According to the pilot's completed NTSB Accident Report Form 6120, the last annual inspection was completed on November 11, 2018. The oil filter was dated November 5, 2018, at a tachometer time of 1,851.41 hours. At the time of the examination, the tachometer showed 1,857.06 hours.

The engine was placed inverted on a rolling stand with the nose wheel landing gear and the engine mount remained attached to the engine. The two-bladed fixed pitch propeller was impact separated from the crankshaft flange. The engine was rotated by hand using a turning tool inserted into the vacuum pump pad. Thumb suction and compression were noted, and valve train continuity was verified at all cylinders. The oil filter was cut open and examined, no contaminants were observed. Both magnetos were rotated by hand and spark was observed at each ignition terminal. The carburetor was disassembled, and no defects were noted. The inlet fuel screen, damaged during the accident sequence, was removed and examined and absent contaminants.

The examination did not identify any pre-impact abnormalities with the engine or airframe.

Pilot Information

Certificate: Private
Age: 67, Female
Airplane Rating(s): Single-engine Land
Seat Occupied: Left
Other Aircraft Rating(s): None
Restraint Used:
Instrument Rating(s): None
Second Pilot Present: Yes
Instructor Rating(s): None
Toxicology Performed: No
Medical Certification: Class 3 With Waivers/Limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: 10/01/2017
Occupational Pilot: No
Last Flight Review or Equivalent:
Flight Time:  818.8 hours (Total, all aircraft), 533.5 hours (Total, this make and model), 657.3 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft), 4.6 hours (Last 90 days, all aircraft)

Pilot-Rated Passenger Information

Certificate: Private
Age: 20, Female
Airplane Rating(s): Single-engine Land
Seat Occupied: Right
Other Aircraft Rating(s): None
Restraint Used:
Instrument Rating(s): None
Second Pilot Present: Yes
Instructor Rating(s): None
Toxicology Performed: No
Medical Certification: Class 2 Without Waivers/Limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: 08/01/2018
Occupational Pilot: No
Last Flight Review or Equivalent:
Flight Time: 

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Piper
Registration: N1568J
Model/Series: PA28 140
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 1967
Amateur Built: No
Airworthiness Certificate: Normal
Serial Number: 28-23973
Landing Gear Type: Tricycle
Date/Type of Last Inspection: 11/11/2018, Annual
Certified Max Gross Wt.:
Time Since Last Inspection:
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 5083.2 Hours at time of accident
Engine Manufacturer: Lycoming
ELT: C91A installed
Engine Model/Series: O-320 E2A
Registered Owner: On file
Rated Power: 
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: KTKI
Distance from Accident Site:
Observation Time: 1653 CDT
Direction from Accident Site:
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Visibility:  10 Miles
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility (RVR):
Wind Speed/Gusts: 16 knots / 21 knots
Turbulence Type Forecast/Actual: 
Wind Direction: 160°
Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual:
Altimeter Setting: 29.95 inches Hg
Temperature/Dew Point: 31°C / 21°C
Precipitation and Obscuration: No Precipitation
Departure Point: McKinney, TX (T31)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Destination: McKinney, TX (T31)
Type of Clearance: None
Departure Time:  CDT
Type of Airspace:

Airport Information

Airport: Aero Country Airport (T31)
Runway Surface Type: Asphalt
Airport Elevation: 675 ft
Runway Surface Condition: Dry
Runway Used: 17
IFR Approach: None
Runway Length/Width: 4352 ft / 60 ft
VFR Approach/Landing: Traffic Pattern

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Serious
Aircraft Damage: Destroyed
Passenger Injuries: 1 Serious
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: 1 Minor
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 2 Serious, 1 Minor
Latitude, Longitude: 33.204444, -96.746667 (est)


  1. Headline says abnormal runway contact. How about abnormal house contact?

  2. Abnormal Runway Contact? How about abnormal pilot unable to control aircraft under normal conditions.

  3. They were lucky to live. This was death missed for all involved including those in the home. Complete miracle. This is not the piloting skills of someone with nearly a thousand hours of experience. I wonder if distraction was involved.

  4. I have seen fatalities in far less damaged aircraft. Glad there was no fire.