Tuesday, June 25, 2019

Hard Landing: Cessna 421B Golden Eagle, N421WL; accident occurred June 09, 2019 at Moriarty Municipal Airport (0E0), Torrance County, New Mexico

Additional Participating Entity:
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Albuquerque, New Mexico 

Aviation Accident Final 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/N421WL

Location: Moriarty, NM
Accident Number: GAA19CA335
Date & Time: 06/09/2019, 1210 MDT
Registration: N421WL
Aircraft: Cessna 421
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Hard landing
Injuries: 2 None
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal 

Analysis 

The pilot in the multiengine airplane reported that, during approach, he was too high and too fast. He pulled both throttles to idle, and the airplane "got too slow." About 1/4 mile from the runway, he reduced the flaps from full (third notch) to the second notch. He added that, above the runway, he heard the stall warning horn sound and that he then flared the airplane, which landed hard. The left main landing gear and nosewheel tires popped. He was able to taxi back to the hangar without further incident.

The airplane sustained substantial damage to the wing spars.

The pilot reported that there were no preaccident mechanical failures or malfunctions with the airplane that would have precluded normal operation.

The pilot reported that the wind was from 108° at 4 knots, gusting to 19 knots. The pilot landed the airplane on runway 08. 

Probable Cause and Findings

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be:
The pilot's improper landing flare in gusting wind conditions, which resulted in a hard landing.

Findings

Aircraft
Landing flare - Not attained/maintained (Cause)

Personnel issues
Aircraft control - Pilot (Cause)

Environmental issues
Gusts - Effect on operation

Factual Information

History of Flight

Landing

Hard landing (Defining event)

Pilot Information

Certificate: Private
Age: 53, Male
Airplane Rating(s): Multi-engine Land; Single-engine Land
Seat Occupied:Left 
Other Aircraft Rating(s): None
Restraint Used:
Instrument Rating(s): Airplane
Second Pilot Present: Yes
Instructor Rating(s): None
Toxicology Performed: No
Medical Certification: Class 3 With Waivers/Limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: 08/07/2018
Occupational Pilot: No
Last Flight Review or Equivalent: 06/12/2018
Flight Time:  (Estimated) 2480 hours (Total, all aircraft), 419 hours (Total, this make and model), 2357 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft), 11 hours (Last 90 days, all aircraft), 5 hours (Last 30 days, all aircraft), 2 hours (Last 24 hours, all aircraft)

Pilot Information

Certificate: Flight Instructor; Commercial; Military
Age: 70, 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; Instrument Airplane
Toxicology Performed: No
Medical Certification: Class 3 With Waivers/Limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: 02/19/2018
Occupational Pilot:No 
Last Flight Review or Equivalent: 10/16/2017
Flight Time:  (Estimated) 6775 hours (Total, all aircraft), 5 hours (Total, this make and model), 6100 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft), 33 hours (Last 90 days, all aircraft), 12 hours (Last 30 days, all aircraft), 1 hours (Last 24 hours, all aircraft)

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Cessna
Registration: N421WL
Model/Series: 421 B
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 1973
Amateur Built: No
Airworthiness Certificate: Normal
Serial Number: 421B0328
Landing Gear Type: Retractable - Tricycle
Seats: 8
Date/Type of Last Inspection: 11/17/2018, Annual
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 7200 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection:
Engines: 2 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 6811.5 Hours at time of accident
Engine Manufacturer: Continental
ELT: C91  installed, not activated
Engine Model/Series: GTSIO-520-H
Registered Owner: On file
Rated Power: 375 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: KCQC, 7086 ft msl
Distance from Accident Site: 17 Nautical Miles
Observation Time: 1753 UTC
Direction from Accident Site: 86°
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Visibility:  10 Miles
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility (RVR):
Wind Speed/Gusts: 16 knots / 23 knots
Turbulence Type Forecast/Actual: None / None
Wind Direction: 90°
Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual: N/A / N/A
Altimeter Setting: 30.41 inches Hg
Temperature/Dew Point: 18°C / 7°C
Precipitation and Obscuration: No Obscuration; No Precipitation
Departure Point: Moriarty, NM (0E0)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Destination: Moriarty, NM (0E0)
Type of Clearance: VFR
Departure Time: 1019 MDT
Type of Airspace: Class G 

Airport Information

Airport: MORIARTY MUNI (0E0)
Runway Surface Type: Asphalt
Airport Elevation: 6204 ft
Runway Surface Condition: Dry
Runway Used: 08
IFR Approach: Circling; Practice; RNAV
Runway Length/Width: 7702 ft / 75 ft
VFR Approach/Landing: Full Stop 

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: 34.982222, -106.013333 (est)

Icon A5, N84GJ: Accident occurred June 24, 2019 on Okanagan Lake, British Columbia, Canada

https://registry.faa.gov/N84GJ


UPDATE: 7:40 p.m.

Police say a float plane that crashed in Okanagan Lake below Sunnyside Road in West Kelowna has now been recovered and secured by officials.

RCMP Cpl. Jesse O'Donaghey confirms the pilot, a 72-year-old Alberta man and his lone passenger, a 59-year-old man, were taken to Kelowna General Hospital with undetermined, but non life-threatening injuries.

“The crash is not being considered criminal in nature at this time,” says O’Donaghey.

“As such, RCMP have since notified, and continue to support the Transportation Safety Board of Canada who have launched an investigation into the aviation incident.”

UPDATE: 6:40 p.m.

Both occupants of a float plane that crashed into Okanagan Lake upon landing Monday afternoon have been taken to Kelowna General Hospital with what are being described as minor injuries.

RCMP Const. Mike Gillis says the extent of those injuries are not known.

Gillis told Castanet News the plane is designed for both water, and hard surface landings.

He said the wheels of the plane were down, instead of up, when the pilot attempted a water landing.

The wheels caught, forcing the nose of the plane down.

Firefighters are bringing some pieces of the plane to shore, however, it appears as if a tow truck may be required to try and remove the bulk of the plane.

UPDATE: 5:55 p.m.

A search of the overturned aircraft's tail letters N84GJ shows the plane is an amphibious ICON A5.

It is capable of landing on either land or water, but police at the scene say the crash happened during a "wheels down" landing. The plane "nosed over" when the wheels hit the water.

The plane is listed as owned by International Air Services of Carson City, Nevada.

The pilot was an Alberta resident, police say.

Both occupants' injuries were minor in the crash landing.

UPDATE: 5:45 p.m.

Two people on board a light aircraft overturned in Okanagan Lake have been taken to hospital by ambulance, police confirm.

Police and firefighters are on scene, and the aircraft remains in the water.

ORIGINAL: 5:30 p.m.

Rescue crews are on the scene of an overturned plane on Okanagan Lake.

A small plane can been seen upside down in the water near the shore, below Sunnyside Road in West Kelowna.

Story and video ➤  https://www.castanet.net


Pilot and passenger.

Police say the pilot did not go through the proper checklist for landing and the wheels were still down. He made contact with the water and crashed.












The ICON A5 aircraft overturned around 5 p.m. police say the crash landing happened because the aircraft wheels were still down when landing on the water and the pilot didn’t follow proper landing protocol.

Kelowna RCMP have identified the pilot as a 72-year-old Alberta man. He and his passenger, a 59-year-old man were transported to hospital with non-life threatening injuries after overturning their ICON A5, N84GJ, near Sunnyside Road in West Kelowna on Monday evening.

“The crash is not being considered criminal in nature at this time,” RCMP spokesman Cpl. Jesse O’Donaghey said. “As such, RCMP have since notified, and continue to support the Transportation Safety Board of Canada who have launched an investigation into the aviation incident.”

The small, private aircraft has been recovered from Lake Okanagan and has been secured by officials.

Any witnesses of the incident are urged to contact the West Kelowna RCMP at 250-768-2880.

UPDATE 6:45 p.m.

Emergency crews say the plane is not leaking fuel and they are trying to determine their next steps.

Story and video ➤ https://www.coastmountainnews.com

Nose Over: Ptundradactyl, N357WE; accident occurred June 19, 2019 in Friday Creek, Alaska

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Anchorage, Alaska

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

https://registry.faa.gov/N357WE

Location: Friday Creek, AK
Accident Number: GAA19CA370
Date & Time: 06/19/2019, 1800 AKD
Registration: N357WE
Aircraft: KIRK ELLIS WENDELL PTUNDRADACTYL
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Nose over/nose down
Injuries: 1 None
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal 

The pilot in the experimental amateur-built, tailwheel-equipped airplane reported that during a test flight, he landed on the 800ft-long off airport, sand and gravel surface, and the airplane nosed over. The pilot added that the accident could have been prevented by landing on surfaces that, "would not require the use of much braking until I more fully acclimated myself to the toe brake setup in this plane and to sort out any braking pressure issues a little more thoroughly."

The airplane sustained substantial damage to the rudder and the right wing.

The pilot reported that there were no mechanical malfunctions or failures with the airplane that would have precluded normal operation.

Pilot Information

Certificate: Private
Age: 49, Male
Airplane Rating(s): Single-engine Land; Single-engine Sea
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: 09/28/2018
Occupational Pilot: No
Last Flight Review or Equivalent: 04/30/2019
Flight Time:  (Estimated) 1021 hours (Total, all aircraft), 12 hours (Total, this make and model), 965 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft), 77 hours (Last 90 days, all aircraft), 41 hours (Last 30 days, all aircraft), 4 hours (Last 24 hours, all aircraft)

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: KIRK ELLIS WENDELL
Registration: N357WE
Model/Series: PTUNDRADACTYL
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 2019
Amateur Built: Yes
Airworthiness Certificate: Experimental
Serial Number: 001
Landing Gear Type: Tailwheel
Seats: 4
Date/Type of Last Inspection:  Unknown
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 2200 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection:
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 25 Hours
Engine Manufacturer: Superior/Lycoming
ELT: C126 installed, not activated
Engine Model/Series: SL-0-360-A1X3
Registered Owner: On file
Rated Power: 185 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: PAAQ, 230 ft msl
Distance from Accident Site: 1 Nautical Miles
Observation Time:
Direction from Accident Site: 111°
Lowest Cloud Condition:
Visibility:  
Lowest Ceiling:
Visibility (RVR):
Wind Speed/Gusts:  Light and Variable /
Turbulence Type Forecast/Actual:
Wind Direction: Variable
Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual:
Altimeter Setting: 30.17 inches Hg
Temperature/Dew Point: 20°C / 8°C
Precipitation and Obscuration:
Departure Point: Chugiak, AK (PABV)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Destination: Friday Creek, AK
Type of Clearance: None
Departure Time: 1700 PDT
Type of Airspace: Class G

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 None
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None 
Total Injuries: 1 None
Latitude, Longitude: 61.341389, -148.355833 (est)

Location: Friday Creek, AK
Accident Number: GAA19CA370
Date & Time: 06/19/2019, 1800 AKD
Registration: N357WE
Aircraft: KIRK ELLIS WENDELL PTUNDRADACTYL
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Nose over/nose down
Injuries: 1 None
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal 

The pilot in the experimental amateur-built, tailwheel-equipped airplane reported that during a test flight, he landed on the 800ft-long off airport, sand and gravel surface, and the airplane nosed over. The pilot added that the accident could have been prevented by landing on surfaces that, "would not require the use of much braking until I more fully acclimated myself to the toe brake setup in this plane and to sort out any braking pressure issues a little more thoroughly."

The airplane sustained substantial damage to the rudder and the right wing.

The pilot reported that there were no mechanical malfunctions or failures with the airplane that would have precluded normal operation. 

Pilot Information

Certificate: Private
Age: 49, Male
Airplane Rating(s): Single-engine Land; Single-engine Sea
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: 09/28/2018
Occupational Pilot: No
Last Flight Review or Equivalent: 04/30/2019
Flight Time:   (Estimated) 1021 hours (Total, all aircraft), 12 hours (Total, this make and model), 965 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft), 77 hours (Last 90 days, all aircraft), 41 hours (Last 30 days, all aircraft), 4 hours (Last 24 hours, all aircraft)

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: KIRK ELLIS WENDELL
Registration: N357WE
Model/Series: PTUNDRADACTYL
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 2019
Amateur Built: Yes
Airworthiness Certificate: Experimental
Serial Number: 001
Landing Gear Type: Tailwheel
Seats: 4
Date/Type of Last Inspection:  Unknown
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 2200 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection:
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 25 Hours
Engine Manufacturer: Superior/Lycoming
ELT: C126 installed, not activated
Engine Model/Series: SL-0-360-A1X3
Registered Owner: On file
Rated Power: 185 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: PAAQ, 230 ft msl
Distance from Accident Site: 1 Nautical Miles
Observation Time:
Direction from Accident Site: 111°
Lowest Cloud Condition:
Visibility:  
Lowest Ceiling:
Visibility (RVR):
Wind Speed/Gusts:  Light and Variable /
Turbulence Type Forecast/Actual:
Wind Direction: Variable
Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual:
Altimeter Setting: 30.17 inches Hg
Temperature/Dew Point: 20°C / 8°C
Precipitation and Obscuration:
Departure Point: Chugiak, AK (PABV)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Destination: Friday Creek, AK
Type of Clearance: None
Departure Time: 1700 PDT
Type of Airspace: Class G

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 None
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 1 None
Latitude, Longitude: 61.341389, -148.355833 (est)

Piper PA-24-250 Comanche, N5866P: Accident occurred June 24, 2019 at Greeley-Weld County Airport (KGXY), Colorado

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

Additional Participating Entity:

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Denver, Colorado

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


https://registry.faa.gov/N5866P


Location: Greeley, CO
Accident Number: CEN19LA183
Date & Time: 06/24/2019, 1025 MDT
Registration: N5866P
Aircraft: Piper PA24
Injuries: 2 None
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal 

On June 24, 2019, about 1025 mountain daylight time, a Piper PA-24 airplane, N5866P, experienced a right main landing gear collapse upon landing at Greeley-Weld County Airport (GXY) in Greeley, Colorado. The airplane was privately owned and operated. The pilot and passenger were not injured, and the airplane received substantial damage to right wing spar and aft bulkhead structure. The airplane was operated under 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 as a personal flight. Day visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and no flight plan was filed for the local flight.

The pilot reported he had just completed a touch and go on runway 28 prior and landed uneventfully. He completed a final circuit around the pattern, intending to complete a full stop landing. On final approach and touchdown, the pilot stated everything "was good." Then the airplane's right wing dipped down and the nose veered left causing the airplane to exit the runway surface. The airplane hit a taxiway light and continued into the infield on the sough side of the runway where it came to rest.

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Piper
Registration: N5866P
Model/Series: PA24 250
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Amateur Built: No
Operator: On file
Operating Certificate(s) Held:None  

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: Unknown
Condition of Light: Day
Observation Facility, Elevation: KGXY, 4697 ft msl
Observation Time:
Distance from Accident Site: 0 Nautical Miles
Temperature/Dew Point:
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: 8 knots / , 265°
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility:  
Altimeter Setting:
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Departure Point: Greeley, CO (GXY)
Destination: Greeley, CO (GXY)

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 None
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: 1 None
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 2 None
Latitude, Longitude: 40.437500, -104.633333 (est)

Cessna 172N, N4847G: Incident occurred June 24, 2019 in Denver, Colorado

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Denver, Colorado

Aircraft landed in a field.

Front Range Pilot Services LLC

https://registry.faa.gov/N4847G

Date: 24-JUN-19
Time: 18:15:00Z
Regis#: N4847G
Aircraft Make: CESSNA
Aircraft Model: 172
Event Type: INCIDENT
Highest Injury: NONE
Aircraft Missing: No
Damage: UNKNOWN
Activity: PERSONAL
Flight Phase: APPROACH (APR)
Operation: 91
City: DENVER
State: COLORADO

Champion 7ECA Citabria, N5235X: Incident occurred June 24, 2019 at Central Jersey Regional Airport (47N) , Manville, Somerset County, New Jersey

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Allentown

Aircraft landed and prop struck the runway.

https://registry.faa.gov/N5235X

Date: 24-JUN-19
Time: 15:00:00Z
Regis#: N5235X
Aircraft Make: CHAMPION
Aircraft Model: 7ECA
Event Type: INCIDENT
Highest Injury: NONE
Aircraft Missing: No
Damage: UNKNOWN
Activity: PERSONAL
Flight Phase: LANDING (LDG)
Operation: 91
City: CENTRAL JERSEY REGIONAL AIRPORT
State: NEW JERSEY

Piper U-7A (L-21B) Super Cub, N753AT: Accident occurred June 21, 2019 in Imnaha, Wallowa County, Oregon

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Boise, Idaho

L-Bird LLC

https://registry.faa.gov/N753AT

NTSB Identification: GAA19CA369
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Friday, June 21, 2019 in Imnaha, OR
Aircraft: Piper L21, registration: N753AT

NTSB investigators will use data provided by various entities, including, but not limited to, the Federal Aviation Administration and/or the operator, and will not travel in support of this investigation to prepare this aircraft accident report.

Aircraft ground looped on takeoff.

Date: 21-JUN-19
Time: 22:00:00Z
Regis#: N753AT
Aircraft Make: PIPER
Aircraft Model: L-21B
Event Type: ACCIDENT
Highest Injury: NONE
Aircraft Missing: No
Damage: SUBSTANTIAL
Activity: PERSONAL
Flight Phase: TAKEOFF (TOF)
Operation: 91
City: IMNAHA
State: OREGON

Loss of Control in Flight: Robinson R44 II, N7091F, fatal accident occurred June 03, 2017 in Dimmitt, Castro County, Texas

Donald "Don" Oppliger
Don loved cattle and enjoyed checking on his many pastures and feedlots from the cockpit of his plane or helicopters. Aside from attending Nebraska Cornhusker games, farming and flying were his favorite hobbies. “People say he died doing what he loved,” said his son, Ben Oppliger. “That’s really true.” 


The National Transportation Safety Board traveled to the scene of this accident.

Additional Participating Entities:
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Lubbock, Texas
Robinson Helicopter Company; Torrance, California

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


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

Aviation Accident Data Summary - National Transportation Safety Board: https://app.ntsb.gov/pdf  

http://registry.faa.gov/N7091F

Location: Dimmitt, TX
Accident Number: CEN17FA209
Date & Time: 06/03/2017, 1437 CDT
Registration: N7091F
Aircraft: ROBINSON HELICOPTER COMPANY R44 II
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Loss of control in flight
Injuries: 1 Fatal
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Business 

Analysis

The private pilot, who did not hold a rotorcraft rating, departed in the helicopter on a routine flight to check and observe crop fields, business facilities, and other business-related assets. A search was initiated when the pilot did not return from the flight, and the accident site was located in a field the following morning. There were no witnesses to the accident. Data obtained from an onboard GPS showed the helicopter making a series of turns at a low altitude above the field in which the wreckage was located. Examination of the helicopter did not reveal any preimpact mechanical malfunctions and there was no damage to nearby obstructions to suggest an in-flight collision.

The pilot's autopsy revealed scarring in heart muscle from previous heart attacks and severe left ventricular hypertrophy. Each of these findings significantly increased his risk for a sudden arrhythmia. Such an arrhythmia would likely cause sudden symptoms such as palpitations or altered/decreased consciousness as a result of diminished blood pressure. It is likely that scarring from previous heart attacks and severe hypertrophy of the left ventricular wall caused arrhythmia which resulted in incapacitation and a loss of control at low altitude. Although the pilot did not hold a rating for rotorcraft, his recent flight experience in the accident helicopter performing similar flight profiles make it unlikely that he simply lost helicopter control. 

Probable Cause and Findings

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be:
The pilot's incapacitation due to scarring from previous heart attacks and severe hypertrophy of the left ventricular wall which resulted in arrhythmia and a loss of control while maneuvering at low altitude. 

Findings

Aircraft
Performance/control parameters - Not attained/maintained (Cause)

Personnel issues
Cardiovascular - Pilot (Cause)
Aircraft control - Pilot (Cause)
Qualification/certification - Pilot

Factual Information

History of Flight

Maneuvering-low-alt flying
Loss of control in flight (Defining event)
Collision with terr/obj (non-CFIT)

On June 3, 2017, about 1437 central daylight time, a Robinson R44 II helicopter, N7091F, impacted terrain while maneuvering at near Dimmitt, Texas. The private pilot sustained fatal injuries, and the helicopter sustained substantial damage. The helicopter was registered to Don Oppliger Trucking, Inc, Clovis, New Mexico, and privately operated under the provisions of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the accident, and no flight plan was filed for the local business flight, which departed a private helipad near Farwell, Texas, about 1302.

According to the pilot's business manager, the pilot departed on a routine flight to check and observe crop fields, business facilities, and other business-related assets. When the pilot did not return from the flight, a search was initiated. The helicopter wreckage was located in a field about 0800 the following morning. There were no witnesses to the accident.

Flight data downloaded from a Garmin GPSmap 496 handheld GPS unit located at the accident site included the accident flight. Data extracted from the unit included 13 flight track logs from April 22, 2017, to June 3, 2017. The accident flight was recorded starting at 1302:31 and ended at 1437:28, and included 730 discrete points. The flight track was consistent with the pilot overflying fields, facilities, and other business assets. The end of the data showed the helicopter making a series of turns at a low altitude above the field where the wreckage was located.

Pilot Information

Certificate: Private
Age: 68, Male
Airplane Rating(s): Multi-engine Land; Single-engine Land
Seat Occupied: Right
Other Aircraft Rating(s): None
Restraint Used: None
Instrument Rating(s): Airplane
Second Pilot Present: No
Instructor Rating(s): None
Toxicology Performed: Yes
Medical Certification: Class 3 With Waivers/Limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: 03/29/2017
Occupational Pilot: No
Last Flight Review or Equivalent:
Flight Time:  4225 hours (Total, all aircraft), 177 hours (Total, this make and model) 

The pilot held a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) private pilot certificate with airplane single and multi-engine land and instrument airplane ratings. The pilot did not hold a rotorcraft rating; however, according to his business manager, he had flown helicopters for several years for business purposes. Based on the 177 total hours on the accident helicopter, the pilot's estimated rotorcraft flight experience was at least 177 hours. The pilot reported a total flight experience of 4,225 hours on his 2016 FAA medical certificate application.

According to the FAA medical files, the 68 year-old pilot reported having had a 4 vessel coronary artery bypass graft procedure in 2008, followed by a stent in his right coronary artery in 2009. After reviewing the data related to these events, the FAA granted the pilot special issuance medical certificates beginning in 2010. At the time of his last aviation medical examination on March 29, 2017, he reported using aspirin and clopidogrel as blood thinners, losartan for blood pressure control, and a combination of ezetimibe and simvastatin to control his cholesterol. None of these were considered impairing. A stress echo cardiogram, dated January 6, 2017, demonstrated that the pilot reached 16 mets, more than 150% of the target heart rate, and had no ischemic findings on his electrocardiogram or echocardiogram. The aviation medical examiner found no abnormalities and the pilot received a special issuance third class medical certificate limited by a requirement for corrective lenses and marked, "Not valid for any class after March 31, 2018."

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: ROBINSON HELICOPTER COMPANY
Registration: N7091F
Model/Series: R44 II II
Aircraft Category: Helicopter
Year of Manufacture: 2015
Amateur Built: No
Airworthiness Certificate: Normal
Serial Number: 13910
Landing Gear Type: Skid;
Seats: 4
Date/Type of Last Inspection: 03/20/2017, Annual
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 2500 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection: 27 Hours
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 177 Hours at time of accident
Engine Manufacturer: LYCOMING
ELT: Not installed
Engine Model/Series: IO-540-AE1A5
Registered Owner: DON OPPLIGER TRUCKING INC
Rated Power: 245 hp
Operator: On file
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None

The accident helicopter, serial number 13910, was a Robinson R44 II, four-place, two-bladed, single main rotor, single-engine helicopter, with skid-type landing gear. The primary structure was welded steel tubing and riveted aluminum. The tailboom was a semi-monocoque structure consisting of an aluminum skin. Each seat was equipped with a combined seat belt and inertia reel shoulder strap. 

The helicopter was equipped with a Lycoming IO-540- AE1A5 engine, serial number L-36203-48E, rated at 260 horsepower; however, according to the helicopter's type certificate, the engine had a 5-minute takeoff rating of 245 horsepower and a maximum continuous rating of 205 horsepower.

The helicopter was registered to the owner on December 1, 2015. 

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: Visual Conditions
Condition of Light: Day
Observation Facility, Elevation: HRX, 3788 ft msl
Distance from Accident Site: 28 Nautical Miles
Observation Time: 1435 CDT
Direction from Accident Site: 300°
Lowest Cloud Condition: Scattered / 4000 ft agl
Visibility: 10 Miles
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility (RVR):
Wind Speed/Gusts: 3 knots /
Turbulence Type Forecast/Actual: / None
Wind Direction: 70°
Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual: /
Altimeter Setting: 30.06 inches Hg
Temperature/Dew Point: 26°C / 14°C
Precipitation and Obscuration: No Precipitation
Departure Point: Farwell, TX (PVT)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Destination: Farwell, TX (PVT)
Type of Clearance: None
Departure Time: 1302 CDT
Type of Airspace: Class G 

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: 34.420556, -102.512222 

Examination of the accident site revealed that the helicopter came to rest on its right side in a wheat field (the wheat crop was about 3 inches tall) owned by the pilot's business. Three ground scars, consistent with main rotor blade strikes, were observed adjacent to the main wreckage. Fragmented plexiglass was scattered between the ground scars and main wreckage. Separated sections of the main rotor blades were located within a 75-ft diameter of the main wreckage; the main rotor blades were fragmented, bent, deformed, and their root sections remained attached to the rotor hub. No evidence of contact with any adjacent structures or power lines was observed.

The lower forward fuselage was crushed aft and upward. The tailboom was intact, and the horizontal stabilizer was bent. No damage was noted to the tail skid. The forward landing gear skid tubes were fractured, and the left forward skid tube was separated and located in the debris field. The left forward door was separated, the right forward door and rear cabin doors were damaged and partially fragmented. The forward seat belts and shoulder harnesses were unlatched. The helicopter was not equipped with an emergency locator transmitter.

Flight control continuity was established from the cockpit flight controls to the swashplate and tail rotor system. Drivetrain continuity was established from the engine to the main transmission and tail rotor systems.

The engine remained attached to the engine mount and secured in the airframe. Thumb compression was noted on all cylinders, and mechanical continuity throughout the engine was established. The magnetos and ignition leads produced spark when engine crankshaft was rotated. 

Medical And Pathological Information

An autopsy was performed by South Plains Forensic Pathology, P.A., Lubbock, Texas. The cause of death was blood loss due to visceral injuries due to blunt force injuries, and the manner of death was an accident.

The autopsy also described significant heart disease. The heart weighed 610 gm and both the ventricles were dilated; the left ventricle was described as having severe hypertrophy, but no measurements were given. There was very severe coronary artery disease in the native arteries, but the grafts were all described as patent. A stent was identified, but not further described. Sections of the myocardium revealed scarring from old heart attacks in the left ventricle. Microscopy of the heart showed myocyte hypertrophy with interstitial and perivascular fibrosis. There were areas where adipose and fibrotic tissue replaced normal cells.

Toxicology testing performed by the Federal Aviation Administration's Bioaeronautical Sciences Research Laboratory, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, identified no ethanol in the vitreous. In addition, salicylate (a metabolite of aspirin) was found in urine, losartan was found in cavity blood and liver, and clopidogrel was identified in liver tissue. As stated above, none of these are considered impairing.

Aeronca 7EC Champion, N4349C: Accident occurred June 21, 2019 near Walker County Airport-Bevill Field (KJFX), Jasper, Walker County, Alabama

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

Additional Participating Entity:
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Birmingham, Alabama

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

https://registry.faa.gov/N4349C

Location: Jasper, AL
Accident Number: ERA19LA202
Date & Time: 06/21/2019, 1300 CDT
Registration: N4349C
Aircraft: Aeronca S7EC
Injuries:2 None 
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal 

On June 21, 2019, at 1300 central daylight time, an Aeronca S7EC, N4349C, was substantially damaged during a forced landing while on final approach to Walker County Airport-Bevill Field (JFX), Jasper, Alabama. The airline transport pilot/owner and a pilot-rated passenger were not injured. The personal flight departed from a private airport near Hayden, Alabama, and was conducted under the provisions of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91. Day visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and no flight plan was filed for the flight that departed about 1235.

The pilot/owner stated that he and the pilot-rated passenger departed the private airport for the 25 nautical mile flight to JFX. As they approached the destination airport, engine power was reduced, and they conducted a series of "s" turns to slow the airplane and increase separation due to other aircraft in the JFX airport traffic pattern. On the final leg of the traffic pattern, the throttle was increased, but the engine did not respond. The pilot attempted to troubleshoot by checking the fuel, carburetor heat, and magneto switches. He pumped the throttle several times, after which the engine surged, then completely "quit" while descending through 500 ft. The pilot made a forced landing in a grass field about 600 ft short of runway 27. The airplane touched down and during the landing ground roll, it struck a drainage ditch, shearing off the landing gear as the airplane skidded to a stop.

Examination of the airplane by a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) inspector revealed that the airframe was substantially damaged during landing; the landing gear was sheared off which resulted in substantial damage to the underside of the fuselage. The fuel quantity of the main tank, which holds 13 gallons, remained intact and appeared to contain about 8 gallons of fuel.

The pilot, age 86, held an airline transport pilot certificate, with ratings for airplane multiengine land, airplane single-engine land, and instrument airplane. He also held a flight instructor certificate. The pilot reported 19,050 hours of total time, of which 300 hours were in the accident airplane make and model.

According to FAA airworthiness and airplane maintenance records, the airplane was issued an airworthiness certificate on November 28, 1955. It was a two-place, externally braced high-wing airplane, that was equipped with conventional landing gear, and a Continental C90-12F, 95-horsepower engine driving a two-blade wooden fixed pitch propeller.

The weather conditions reported at JFX, at 1255, included no wind data, visibility 10 statute miles, broken cloud coverage at 4,300 ft, temperature 34° C, dew point 23° C, and an altimeter setting of 30.00 inches of mercury. 

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Aeronca
Registration: N4349C
Model/Series: S7EC No Series
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: JFX, 482 ft msl
Observation Time: 1255 CDT
Distance from Accident Site: 1 Nautical Miles
Temperature/Dew Point: 34°C / 23°C
Lowest Cloud Condition:
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction:
Lowest Ceiling: Broken / 4300 ft agl
Visibility:  10 Miles
Altimeter Setting: 30 inches Hg
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Departure Point: Hayden, AL (PVT)
Destination: Jasper, AL (JFX) 

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: 33.901111, -87.304167