Saturday, December 07, 2019

Loss of Engine Power (Partial): Cessna 172S Skyhawk, N924MM; accident occurred October 18, 2018 at Lynchburg Regional Airport (KLYH), Campbell County, Virginia

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

Additional Participating Entities:

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Richmond, Virginia
Liberty University; Lynchburg, Virginia

Aviation Accident Factual Report - National Transportation Safety Board:

Investigation Docket - National Transportation Safety Board:

Location: Lynchburg, VA
Accident Number: ERA19LA019
Date & Time: 10/18/2018, 1057 EDT
Registration: N924MM
Aircraft: Cessna 172
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Loss of engine power (partial)
Injuries: 2 None
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Instructional

On October 18, 2018, about 1057 eastern daylight time, a Cessna 172S, N924MM, was substantially damaged following a partial loss of engine power and forced landing after takeoff from Lynchburg Regional Airport (LYH), Lynchburg, Virginia. The flight instructor and the student pilot were not injured. The airplane was operated by Liberty University under the provisions of Title14 Code of Federal Regulations part 91 as an instructional flight. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and no flight plan was filed for the local flight that was originating at the time of the accident.

The flight instructor, who was in the right cockpit seat, reported that ground operations were normal, including pretakeoff engine indications. The student performed the takeoff on runway 4. After flap retraction, about 200 feet above the ground, they observed an engine vibration and the airplane shuddered. They noted a decrease in engine RPM with degraded performance. The flight instructor took the controls and noted that the airspeed had dropped to just above stall speed and the stall warning horn sounded. He lowered the airplane's nose to prevent a stall and attempted to land on the intersecting runway 35. The airplane touched down with about 100 feet of runway remaining. Realizing that he could not stop the airplane within the remaining runway, the instructor steered the airplane to the right to avoid a steep drop-off under the extended centerline of the runway. The airplane departed the runway surface, collided with a drainage ditch, and came to a stop in the grass in a nose down position. The pilots egressed the airplane and were met by first responders.

A Federal Aviation Administration inspector responded to the accident site and examined the wreckage. He reported that the outboard portion of the left wing sustained structural damage during the landing. The propeller struck the ground during the event.The inspector examined the engine after the recovery of the wreckage. A cylinder pressure/leak check (with 80 psi input pressure) was performed. The Nos. 1, 3, and 4 cylinder readings were 74, 74, and 78 psi, respectively. The No. 2 cylinder read 22 psi. The No. 2 cylinder spark plugs were oil soaked. The No. 2 exhaust valve was stuck open; air could be heard escaping past the valve. There were no cracks or leaks observed in the cylinder body. The engine had accumulated 2,106 hours since overhaul, and the manufacturer's overhaul interval on the engine was 2,200 hours.

Flight Instructor Information

Certificate: Flight Instructor; Commercial
Age: 22, Male
Airplane Rating(s): Multi-engine Land; Single-engine Land
Seat Occupied: Right
Other Aircraft Rating(s): None
Restraint Used:
Instrument Rating(s): Airplane
Second Pilot Present: Yes
Instructor Rating(s): Airplane Multi-engine; Airplane Single-engine
Toxicology Performed: No
Medical Certification: Class 1 Without Waivers/Limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: 12/21/2017
Occupational Pilot: Yes
Last Flight Review or Equivalent: 05/21/2018
Flight Time:  328 hours (Total, all aircraft), 282 hours (Total, this make and model), 278 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft), 81 hours (Last 90 days, all aircraft), 37 hours (Last 30 days, all aircraft), 2 hours (Last 24 hours, all aircraft)

Student Pilot Information

Certificate: Student
Age: 20, Male
Airplane Rating(s): None
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 1 Without Waivers/Limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: 12/14/2017
Occupational Pilot: No
Last Flight Review or Equivalent:
Flight Time:  4 hours (Total, all aircraft), 4 hours (Total, this make and model), 0 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft), 4 hours (Last 90 days, all aircraft), 4 hours (Last 30 days, all aircraft), 0 hours (Last 24 hours, all aircraft)

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Cessna
Registration: N924MM
Model/Series:172 S 
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 2010
Amateur Built: No
Airworthiness Certificate: Normal; Utility
Serial Number: 172S11056
Landing Gear Type: Tricycle
Seats: 4
Date/Type of Last Inspection: 08/17/2018, 100 Hour
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 2550 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection: 78 Hours
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 3592 Hours at time of accident
Engine Manufacturer: Lycoming
ELT: C126 installed, not activated
Engine Model/Series: IO-360-L2A
Registered Owner: Liberty University
Rated Power: 180 hp
Operator: Liberty University
Operating Certificate(s) Held: Pilot School (141)

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: Visual Conditions
Condition of Light: Day
Observation Facility, Elevation: LYH, 938 ft msl
Distance from Accident Site: 0 Nautical Miles
Observation Time: 1054 EDT
Direction from Accident Site:
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Visibility:  10 Miles
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility (RVR):
Wind Speed/Gusts: 3 knots /
Turbulence Type Forecast/Actual: None / None
Wind Direction: 360°
Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual: N/A / N/A
Altimeter Setting: 30.45 inches Hg
Temperature/Dew Point: 12°C / 1°C
Precipitation and Obscuration: No Obscuration; No Precipitation
Departure Point: Lynchburg, VA (LYH)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Destination: Lynchburg, VA (LYH)
Type of Clearance: VFR
Departure Time: 1056 EDT
Type of Airspace: Class D

Airport Information

Airport: Lynchburg Regional (LYH)
Runway Surface Type: Asphalt
Airport Elevation: 938 ft
Runway Surface Condition: Dry
Runway Used: 04
IFR Approach: None
Runway Length/Width: 7100 ft / 150 ft
VFR Approach/Landing: Forced Landing

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 2 None
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 2 None
Latitude, Longitude: 37.330000, -79.200000 (est)

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