Saturday, July 13, 2019

Turbulence Encounter: Cessna 172L Skyhawk, N7070Q; fatal accident occurred September 22, 2017 near Ernest A. Love Field Airport (KPRC), Prescott, Yavapai County, Arizona

Spencer Allan Kihlstrom
  https://www.facebook.com

Jeremiah Gene Linnertz 



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

Additional Participating Entities:

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Scottsdale, Arizona
Lycoming Engines; Williamsport, Pennsylvania
Textron Aviation; Wichita, Kansas 
  
Aviation Accident Factual Report - National Transportation Safety Board: https://app.ntsb.gov/pdf


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

http://registry.faa.gov/N7070Q

Spencer Allan Kihlstrom


Location: Perkinsville, AZ
Accident Number: WPR17FA213
Date & Time: 09/22/2017, 1635 MST
Registration: N7070Q
Aircraft: CESSNA 172L
Aircraft Damage: Destroyed
Defining Event: Turbulence encounter
Injuries: 2 Fatal
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal 

On September 22, 2017, about 1635 mountain standard time, a Cessna 172L, N7070Q, collided with mountainous terrain near Perkinsville, Arizona. The private pilot and passenger sustained fatal injuries, and the airplane was destroyed by postimpact fire. The airplane was registered to Peach Flyers LLC and was operated by the pilot as a Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 91 personal flight. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and no flight plan was filed for the flight, which departed Ernest A. Love Field Airport (PRC), Prescott, Arizona, at 1621 with an unknown destination.

The pilot told family members that he was planning to fly with his friend, who was the passenger, and stay in the traffic pattern at PRC performing touch-and-go takeoffs and landings.

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) provided data from an airport surveillance radar sensor located in Seligman, Arizona (about 57 miles northwest of PRC), and audio recordings from the PRC air traffic control tower. The data revealed that, on the day of the accident, after contacting ground controllers, the pilot switched to the tower frequency and requested a departure to the northeast. The clearance was granted, and after taking off from runway 21R, a radar target with a transponder beacon code of 1200 entered the right downwind leg of the airport traffic pattern and departed to the northeast. Over the next 2 1/2 minutes, the target climbed to a transponder-reported altitude of 7,175 ft mean sea level (msl), about 2,100 ft above field elevation, where it leveled off 2.75 miles northeast of the airport.

For the next 8 minutes, the target began a gradual descent while maintaining the northeast track and a ground speed about 110 knots (See Figure 1). The last target was recorded at 1632:47 traveling at a ground speed of 95 knots just west of the entrance to the Verde River Canyon at an altitude of 4,550 ft msl (750 ft above the river). Beyond the canyon entrance, the Verde River followed a meandering path to the southeast, eventually reaching the town of Cottonwood, Arizona, 15 miles away.

No radar data were available to indicate that the airplane ever emerged from the end of the canyon, nor was there any evidence that the airplane reached Cottonwood.

The following morning, the pilot's family and friends became concerned when they had not heard from him since the previous night. They alerted the local sheriff's department, and at 1108, the FAA issued an Alert Notice. The sheriff's department initiated a helicopter search using radar data and network-based cell phone signal analysis, and the wreckage was discovered about 1300 within the Verde River Canyon, 1.8 miles east-southeast of the last recorded radar target and 19 miles northeast of PRC (see Figure 2).

Figure 1 - Radar track and accident site

Figure 2 – Last radar target and wreckage site

PERSONNEL INFORMATION

The 19-year-old pilot held a private pilot certificate with an airplane single-engine land rating, issued February 25, 2017. No personal flight records were located; they were presumed to have been destroyed by the postimpact fire.

According to his flight instructor, the pilot began flying in 2016, and had accrued about 120 hours total flight experience, including about 60 hours as pilot-in-command. The majority of his flight time was accrued in the accident airplane.

The instructor last flew with the pilot 2 days before the accident for about 1.5 hours, providing training in preparation for the pilot's instrument rating. He stated that the pilot was one of the most conscientious and conservative students he had ever flown with, rating his skill level and competency in the top 20% of students he had worked with.

The instructor was familiar with the Verde River Canyon and had flown through it with the accident pilot on one previous occasion. The reason for that flight was to teach the pilot the importance of maintaining coordinated flight with the correct use of the rudder pedals. They flew a Cessna 140 and entered the canyon near Cottonwood then flew the canyon from east to west. They flew just below the rim of the canyon walls, maintaining 500 ft separation from obstacles. About halfway through the passage, the river curve became too narrow and the canyon walls too tight to safely make a turn, so they climbed out of the canyon and over a ridge.

The instructor stated that he flew the canyon after the accident and noticed that the wreckage was located at the outer radius of the river bend, in exactly the area they had avoided.

The passenger was a high school friend of the pilot. They had both flown together in the accident airplane before, but the passenger was not a pilot. There was no evidence to suggest the pilot had flown the canyon with anyone other than his instructor. 

Pilot Information

Certificate: Private
Age: 19, Male
Airplane Rating(s): Single-engine Land
Seat Occupied: Left
Other Aircraft Rating(s): None
Restraint Used: 3-point
Instrument Rating(s): None
Second Pilot Present: No
Instructor Rating(s): None
Toxicology Performed: Yes
Medical Certification: Class 2 Without Waivers/Limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: 04/14/2014
Occupational Pilot: No
Last Flight Review or Equivalent: 02/25/2017
Flight Time:  (Estimated) 120 hours (Total, all aircraft), 100 hours (Total, this make and model) 


Jeremiah Linnertz (left) and Spencer Kihlstrom during an earlier flight. The two died on September 22, 2017 after the plane they were flying in crashed east of Paulden.

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: CESSNA
Registration: N7070Q
Model/Series: 172L
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 1972
Amateur Built: No
Airworthiness Certificate: Normal; Utility
Serial Number: 17260370
Landing Gear Type: Tricycle
Seats: 4
Date/Type of Last Inspection: 06/27/2017, Annual
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 2400 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection: 30 Hours
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 4064.7 Hours as of last inspection
Engine Manufacturer: LYCOMING
ELT: C91A installed, activated, did not aid in locating accident
Engine Model/Series: O-360-A4M
Registered Owner: PEACH FLYERS LLC
Rated Power: 180 hp
Operator: On file
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None 

The airplane was manufactured in 1972 and was originally equipped with a 150-horsepower Lycoming O-320 engine. It was upgraded to a 180-horsepower Lycoming O-360 engine in 2005 in accordance with supplemental type certificate (STC) SA4428SW. The upgrade provided for an increase in maximum gross weight from 2,300 to 2,500 lbs, along with associated changes in flight performance and fuel consumption.

The airplane's fuel capacity was 42 gallons, and its fuel consumption varied between 6.1 and 10.3 gallons per hour depending on the airplane's weight, engine power setting, and environmental conditions. The airplane's weight and balance information was not located; however, the airplane owner's manual (AOM) indicated a typical basic empty weight of 1,364 lbs.

The airplane was owned by a limited liability corporation of which the pilot had been a member for about 1 year. The pilot was the predominant operator of the airplane during that period. The airplane was kept in a hangar.

The last fueling records located indicated that the airplane was serviced to capacity with the addition of 25 gallons of 100 low-lead aviation gasoline at Cottonwood Airport (P52) on September 8, 2017. The pilot who flew the airplane and serviced it with fuel stated that the airplane flew well that day and that there were no maintenance discrepancies. He further stated that fuel was typically purchased in Cottonwood, where the fuel prices were lower, before returning to PRC.

The accident pilot was the only pilot to fly the airplane since fueling, during the 1.5-hour instrument training flight that took place on September 20. 

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: Visual Conditions
Condition of Light: Day
Observation Facility, Elevation: KPRC, 5052 ft msl
Distance from Accident Site: 20 Nautical Miles
Observation Time: 2353 UTC
Direction from Accident Site: 223°
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Visibility:  10 Miles
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility (RVR):
Wind Speed/Gusts: 15 knots / 22 knots
Turbulence Type Forecast/Actual: 
Wind Direction: 200°
Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual:
Altimeter Setting: 29.86 inches Hg
Temperature/Dew Point: 19°C / -9°C
Precipitation and Obscuration: No Obscuration; No Precipitation
Departure Point: PRESCOTT, AZ (PRC)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Destination:
Type of Clearance: None
Departure Time: 1621 MST
Type of Airspace: Class G

Surface Observations

PRC (elevation 5,045 ft msl) was equipped with an Automated Surface Observation System (ASOS) augmented by the local tower controllers. The observation issued at 1653 indicated wind from 200° at 15 knots gusting to 22 knots, 10 miles visibility, clear sky below 12,000 ft, temperature 19°C, dew point -9° C, altimeter setting of 29.86 inches of mercury (Hg). Gusting wind conditions existed throughout the hottest parts of the afternoon, generally from 180° to 200°, sustained at 12 to 17 knots with gusts to 27 knots.

Similar conditions existed at Sedona Airport (SEZ), 18 miles east of the accident site at an elevation of 4,830 ft msl. The automated weather observation at 1635 indicated wind from 210° at 16 knots gusting to 24 knots, 10 miles visibility or greater, clear skies below 12,000 ft, temperature 21°C, dew point 3°C, altimeter 29.84 inches of Hg.

Sounding

A High-Resolution Rapid Refresh (HRRR) numerical model was obtained from archived data from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Air Resource Laboratory database for the approximate location of the accident at 1700.

The HRRR model depicted a surface temperature of 23.2°C, a dew point of -3.9°C, relative humidity 16%, density altitude of 6,255 ft, and a surface wind from 210° at 11 knots. The sounding supported strong thermals from the surface to 9,000 ft.

The wind profile indicated south-southwesterly winds from 10 to 20 knots through 10,000 ft. Calculated conditions at the airplane's last radar-observed altitude of 4,550 ft included wind from 210° at 14 knots, a temperature of 21°C, and density altitude near 6,343 ft.

The National Weather Service Flagstaff 1700 sounding, which was launched 28 miles northeast of the accident location, showed similar temperature structures, but with a temperature inversion at 6,240 ft above ground level (agl) and strong thermals from the surface to this level. The wind profile showed wind at the surface from 190° at 10 knots gusting to 26 knots, with wind speeds through to 1,000 ft increasing to 24 knots. The observed sounding indicated a moderate potential for low-level wind shear and a moderate and greater potential for turbulence below 1,000 ft agl.

Pilot Reports and Local Observations

There were no significant pilot reports (PIREPs) of turbulence below 8,000 ft surrounding the period of the accident.

A flight instructor operating in the immediate vicinity of the accident at the time of the accident provided a statement of the conditions that he encountered. He reported south-southwesterly winds near 25 knots, with light turbulence through 9,000 ft. He stated that he did not encounter any significant weather, and indicated that it was an ordinary windy day for the area.

Weather Research and Forecasting Model Simulation

A Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF) numerical model was run to simulate the weather conditions during the period from 1600 through 1700 with regard to wind, vertical motion, and the Richardson number (Ri) for turbulence determination surrounding the time of the accident.

The results of the model supported moderate turbulence over the area, with wind speeds of 18 to 20 knots at the accident site about 1630, with vertical velocities ranging between 300 fpm down to 500 fpm up. 

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Fatal
Aircraft Damage: Destroyed
Passenger Injuries: 1 Fatal
Aircraft Fire: On-Ground
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 2 Fatal
Latitude, Longitude: 34.884167, -112.156389 

The airplane came to rest at an elevation of 4,290 ft msl on 45° sloping walls at a river turn on the north cut bank of the canyon (See Figures 3, 4). The airplane was located about 200 ft below the canyon rim and 500 ft above the river. The area was strewn with sandstone slabs, rocks, and boulders up to 8 ft in size.


Figure 3 – View of the wreckage site (circled) toward the northwest

Figure 4 – Wreckage site

The airplane cabin and wings came to rest inverted on a heading of about 030° true. The aft fuselage and empennage had rotated 90° to the airplane's right, and the outboard right wing had folded underneath itself about midspan. Fire had consumed the main cabin and most of the right wing inboard of the aileron. The empennage and the left wing outboard of the pitot tube remained largely undamaged. The engine and firewall came to rest wedged between a set of boulders on the upsloping side of the wreckage (See Figure 5).


Figure 5 – Wreckage site viewed downhill toward turn in river

The wreckage was tightly contained within the immediate vicinity of the accident site, there was no damage to any of the surrounding terrain, and all control surfaces were accounted for. An examination of the engine and airframe was performed following recovery from the accident site. A complete report is contained in the public docket; the following is a summary of findings.

Fuselage

The fuselage from the firewall to the baggage door frame was consumed by fire. Remnants included the main landing gear, which was still attached to the lower box assembly. The left door had detached from the airframe and the right door was consumed by fire with only the window frame remaining.

The forward seats, with the exception of the steel seat adjustment components, were consumed by fire. Both the left and right front seat lap buckles were found in the latched configuration and the belts were consumed by fire.

Tail

The empennage remained attached to the aft fuselage. The left side of the aft fuselage was largely undamaged, and the right side sustained thermal damage along its entire length. The elevator remained attached to the horizontal stabilizer by its hinges; the elevator trim tab was in place and its control rod had extended 1.25 inches out of the actuator, consistent with a 5° trim tab-down (elevator up) position.

Left Wing

The left wing was intact except for thermal damage to the inboard leading edge at the fuel tank. The flap remained attached at its rails and the aileron remained attached by its hinges. The stall warning horn at the wing root was consumed by fire.

Right Wing

The inboard section of the wing was consumed by fire, with only remnants of the fuel tank, flap actuator assembly, outboard flap and rail, and wing spar remaining. The wing sustained accordion-like crush damage to the underside, outboard of the lift strut attach point. The flap actuator jack screw exhibited an extension of about 1/8 inch, consistent with fully-retracted flaps.

Engine

The engine remained attached to its mount, which was still attached to the crushed firewall. The engine sustained thermal damage, consuming the right magneto, the spark plug harness, oil sump, alternator, and the right side of the accessory case. The carburetor sustained extensive thermal damage, melting the float and destroying all gaskets. The fuel inlet line fitting was in place, and the inlet screen was free of obstructions.

Visual inspection of the combustion chambers was accomplished through the spark plug bores utilizing a borescope; there was no evidence of foreign object ingestion or valve damage and all combustion surfaces were coated in grey deposits.

The crankcase did not exhibit any breaches indicative of internal catastrophic failure. Drive train continuity was established and the camshaft and magneto drive idler gears were intact. The camshaft lobes and corresponding tappet contact areas appeared undamaged.

The propeller remained attached at the crankshaft flange. The tip of one blade had melted away about 24 inches from the root; the remaining section of the blade exhibited one-inch-deep leading-edge gouges midspan. The second blade was bent about 15° aft midspan, and its tip separated about 28 inches from the root.

Medical And Pathological Information

According to the autopsy performed by the Yavapai County Office of the Medical Examiner, Prescott Valley, Arizona, the cause of death for both the pilot and passenger was thermal injury with smoke and soot inhalation, along with multiple blunt force trauma.

Toxicology testing of both occupants was performed by the FAA Forensic Sciences Laboratory. Testing was negative for carbon monoxide and all screened drug substances and ingested alcohol. Refer to the toxicology report included in the public docket for specific test parameters and results.

Tests And Research

Airplane Performance

The approximate radius of the bend in the river at the base of the canyon was 300 ft. The radius of the river canyon at the elevation of the wreckage was about 1,050 ft, and the radius at the canyon rim was 1,400 ft.

Airplane turning performance from Aerodynamics for Naval Aviators (NAVWEPS 00-80T-80), Figure 2.29, General Turning Performance (Constant Altitude, Steady Turn) indicated that an airplane with a true airspeed of 79 mph would have to bank 61° in order to fly a turn with a radius of 300 ft. At the same airspeed, an airplane would have to bank 27° in order to fly a turn with a radius of 1,050 ft.

The supplemental flight manual provided with the upgraded engine STC indicated that, at a gross weight of 2,500 lbs, with flaps up, the stall speed was 59 mph (calibrated airspeed). At bank angles of 20°, 40°, and 60°, the stall speed increased to 62, 68, and 84 mph, respectively.

The AOM provided maximum rate-of-climb data indicating that, with the airplane at a gross weight of 2,000 lbs, zero flaps, full throttle, and an indicated airspeed of 79 mph, the rate of climb at 5,000 ft and 20°C would be about 570 ft per minute.

Additional Information

The airplane was equipped with an ACK Technologies emergency locator transmitter (ELT), model E-01. It was manufactured in accordance with Technical Standard Order (TSO) C91a and transmitted on the 121.5 MHz and 243.0 MHz frequencies. Maintenance records revealed that the ELT was checked at the last annual inspection in accordance with 14 CFR 91.207d, and a label on the ELT indicated a battery expiration date of December 2022.

The Air Force Rescue Coordination Center (AFRCC), which is responsible for coordinating inland search and rescue activities, receives ELT distress alerts via the Cospas-Sarsat program. The Cospas-Sarsat satellite system ceased processing signals from 121.5 MHz and 243.0 MHz ELTs in February 2009 and now only processes signals from 406 MHz ELTs built in accordance with TSO-C126a.

The ELT was found at the accident site in the "armed" mode. It remained attached to its mount in the tail and was still connected to the antenna, which was undamaged and remained mounted on the top of the aft fuselage. Because the fuselage was inverted, the antenna was resting upside-down against the ground, with its view of the sky obscured.

The pilot from the sheriff's department who located the airplane stated that, although he was performing grid searches just southwest of the accident site, the ELT signal did not aid in the discovery of the airplane, as he did not hear the signal until he was almost directly over the wreckage.

Loss of Engine Power (Total): Piper PA-46-350P Malibu Mirage, N786MD; accident occurred July 30, 2017 near Tahlequah Municipal Airport (KTQH), Cherokee County, Oklahoma

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

Additional Participating Entities:

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
Lycoming Engines; Williamsport, Pennsylvania

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



Location: Tahlequah, OK
Accident Number: CEN17LA292
Date & Time: 07/30/2017, 1859 CDT
Registration: N786MD
Aircraft: PIPER PA 46 350P
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Loss of engine power (total)
Injuries: 4 Minor
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal 

On July 30, 2017, about 1859 central daylight time, a Piper PA-46-350P, N786MD, sustained substantial damage during a forced landing to a field near the Tahlequah Municipal Airport (TQH), Tahlequah Oklahoma, after a complete loss of engine power. The pilot and three passengers received minor injuries. The airplane was owned by ALP Air LLC and operated by the pilot as a 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 personal flight. Visual meteorological conditions existed near the accident site at the time of the flight, and a visual flight rules (VFR) flight plan had been filed. The flight departed from the Joplin Regional Airport (JLN), Joplin, Missouri, about 1800, and was en route to Addison Airport (ADS), Addison, Texas.

The pilot reported he was receiving VFR flight following at 12,500 ft above mean sea level (msl) when the engine started to lose power. The pilot turned toward TQH since it was the nearest airport, and he flew about 6 to 8 nautical miles before the engine stopped producing power. Oil covered the windshield and smoke filled the cockpit, making it difficult to see out of the airplane. The pilot maintained communications with the Fort Worth Center as he glided toward TQH. Once over the airport, he made about 1 1/2 left circles as he prepared to land on the runway 35. However, the landing gear indicator lights indicated that the nose landing gear was not in the fully extended position during the landing approach. He attempted to manually lower the landing gear but without success. While attempting to lower the nose landing gear, he determined that there was insufficient altitude to make it to the runway, so he executed a forced landing to a field about 300 ft short of the runway. During the landing, the right wing struck a hay bale which separated the wing from the fuselage.

The engine was sent to an engine overhaul facility for an engine teardown and examination. The examination revealed that there was a large hole in the engine case near the No. 2 cylinder. The examination of the pistons, piston connecting rods and bearings, and main bearings revealed heat distress signatures consistent with a lack of lubrication. The cylinder attachment flange of the No. 2 cylinder to the engine case exhibited fretting and a metal ridge buildup on the surface of the flange. All 8 through bolts, including 2 through bolts which were fractured, and 2 pieces of the No. 2 cylinder attachment flange with 2 fractured cylinder attachment studs, were sent to the National Transportation Safety Board's (NTSB) Material Laboratory for examination.

The NTSB Materials Laboratory examination of the No. 2 cylinder attachment studs revealed that there were crack arrest lines and ratchet marks on the stud fracture surface, features consistent with fatigue. The fracture features in the fatigue regions had a relatively rough appearance consistent with relatively high cyclic stress.

The examination of the fracture surfaces of the through bolts revealed that there were relatively smooth areas-oriented transverse to the bolt axis observed on one side of the thread consistent with fatigue fracture. The fatigue regions transitioned to rougher matte gray features with a shear lip opposite from the fatigue region, features consistent with overstress fracture across the majority of the cross section.

The machined surfaces of the crank case pieces, including the cylinder attachment flange, the crank case split line, and the cam shaft bore surfaces, all had a gritty or frosted visual appearance. When viewed under an optical stereoscope, the surfaces were rough with generally semispherical pits or craters. Crater-like features were also observed on the cylinder flange stud threads. The thread of the through bolts were free of pit or crater-like features.

The Lycoming Engines Overhaul Manual – Avco Lycoming Direct Drive Aircraft Engines, Revision 14, (July 2011), in the section relating to the cleaning of the crankcase, states the following: "When grit-blasting parts[,] do not use sand or any metallic abrasives. It is recommended instead that mildly abrasive organic substances such as rice, baked wheat, plastic pellets, or crushed walnut shells be used. All machined surfaces must, of course, be adequately masked…"

The engine maintenance records indicated that the engine had been overhauled on June 5, 2009, and the logbook entry stated that the total engine time was 627.2 hours with 000.0 hours since major overhaul (SMOH). (The maintenance records did not indicate the reason why the engine was overhauled) The logbook entry indicated that the company who performed the engine overhaul had sent the crankcase to another company to be repaired. The company that repaired the crankcase indicated that the work order for the repair of the case halves was no longer available, but the receiving and shipping documents indicated that the billing was for inspection and dimension checks only, and that they had shipped the crankcase back to the customer in 2007. The facility indicated that it used glass bead media to grit blast engine cases.

The engine maintenance records indicated that following maintenance was performed on July 1, 2016: "Removed all 6 cylinders. Installed 6 new Lycoming cylinder kit assemblies P/N 05K21262. Checked all ring gaps and valve clearances. Reassembled with all new gaskets and seals…" The engine total time was 1,452.2 hours with 825 hours SMOH. The engine failure occurred about 198 hours after the cylinders were replaced.

Pilot Information

Certificate: Private
Age: 50, Male
Airplane Rating(s): Single-engine Land
Seat Occupied: Left
Other Aircraft Rating(s): None
Restraint Used: 3-point
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: 08/10/2016
Occupational Pilot: No
Last Flight Review or Equivalent:
Flight Time:  559 hours (Total, all aircraft), 140 hours (Total, this make and model)

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: PIPER
Registration: N786MD
Model/Series: PA 46 350P
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 1998
Amateur Built: No
Airworthiness Certificate: Normal
Serial Number: 4636156
Landing Gear Type: Retractable - Tricycle
Seats: 6
Date/Type of Last Inspection: 07/01/2016, Annual
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 4299 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection:
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 4103 Hours as of last inspection
Engine Manufacturer: LYCOMING
ELT: C91A installed, activated, did not aid in locating accident
Engine Model/Series: TI0-540-AE2A
Registered Owner: ALP AIR LLC
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: Dusk
Observation Facility, Elevation: TQH, 874 ft msl
Distance from Accident Site: 0 Nautical Miles
Observation Time: 1855 CDT
Direction from Accident Site: 0°
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Visibility:  10 Miles
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility (RVR):
Wind Speed/Gusts: 5 knots /
Turbulence Type Forecast/Actual:
Wind Direction: 50°
Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual:
Altimeter Setting: 30.06 inches Hg
Temperature/Dew Point: 30°C / 15°C
Precipitation and Obscuration: No Precipitation
Departure Point: Joplin, MO (JLN)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: VFR
Destination: Dallas, TX (ADS)
Type of Clearance: VFR Flight Following
Departure Time: 1800 CDT
Type of Airspace: 

Airport Information

Airport: Tahlequah Municipal Airport (TQH)
Runway Surface Type: Asphalt
Airport Elevation: 874 ft
Runway Surface Condition: Dry
Runway Used: 35
IFR Approach: None
Runway Length/Width: 5001 ft / 75 ft
VFR Approach/Landing: Forced Landing

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Minor
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: 3 Minor
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 4 Minor
Latitude, Longitude: 35.930278, -95.004444 (est)

Loss of Control in Flight: Robinson R44 II, N7535G; accident occurred July 26, 2017 at John Wayne-Orange County Airport (KSNA), Santa Ana, Orange County, California

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

Additional Participating Entity: 

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Long Beach, California

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


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


http://registry.faa.gov/N7535G

Location: Santa Ana, CA
Accident Number: WPR17LA167
Date & Time: 07/26/2017, 1945 PDT
Registration: N7535G
Aircraft: ROBINSON HELICOPTER COMPANY R44 II
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Loss of control in flight
Injuries: 1 None
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Positioning 

On July 26, 2017, about 1945 Pacific daylight time, a Robinson Helicopter R44, N7535G, was substantially damaged following takeoff at John Wayne-Orange County Airport (SNA), Santa Ana, California. The commercial pilot was not injured. The helicopter was registered to and operated by RS Aviation Services as a Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 flight. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed for the flight, which operated on a company flight plan. The flight originated from SNA with an intended destination of Bob Hope Airport (BUR), Burbank, California.

The pilot reported that during takeoff, he experienced a sudden right roll which was uncorrectable with the cyclic input. Video that captured the accident sequence revealed that shortly after takeoff, the helicopter rolled to the right, and the right skid and main rotor blades struck the ground. The helicopter then spun 360° before it came to rest upright with the tailrotor assembly severed from the tailboom.

Postaccident examination of the wreckage at the accident site by a Federal Aviation Administration inspector revealed that flight control continuity was established with no evidence of a preimpact mechanical malfunction or failure that would have precluded normal operation.

The pilot reported no mechanical malfunctions or failures with the helicopter. 

Pilot Information

Certificate: Flight Instructor; Commercial
Age: 30, Male
Airplane Rating(s): None
Seat Occupied: Right
Other Aircraft Rating(s): Helicopter
Restraint Used: 3-point
Instrument Rating(s): Helicopter
Second Pilot Present: No
Instructor Rating(s): Helicopter; Instrument Helicopter
Toxicology Performed: No
Medical Certification: Class 2 Without Waivers/Limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: 03/01/2017
Occupational Pilot: Yes
Last Flight Review or Equivalent: 04/11/2017
Flight Time:  (Estimated) 1298 hours (Total, all aircraft), 657 hours (Total, this make and model), 1231 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft), 148 hours (Last 90 days, all aircraft), 39 hours (Last 30 days, all aircraft), 2 hours (Last 24 hours, all aircraft)

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: ROBINSON HELICOPTER COMPANY
Registration: N7535G
Model/Series: R44 II II
Aircraft Category: Helicopter
Year of Manufacture: 2006
Amateur Built: No
Airworthiness Certificate: Normal
Serial Number: 11181
Landing Gear Type: Skid;
Seats: 4
Date/Type of Last Inspection: 07/11/2017, Annual
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 2500 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection: 38 Hours
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 1808.3 Hours
Engine Manufacturer: LYCOMING
ELT: C91A installed, not activated
Engine Model/Series: IO-540-AE1A5
Registered Owner: RS AVIATION SERVICES
Rated Power: 245 hp
Operator: Orbic Air LLC
Operating Certificate(s) Held: On-demand Air Taxi (135)
Operator Does Business As:
Operator Designator Code: 1OBA 

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: Visual Conditions
Condition of Light: Dusk
Observation Facility, Elevation: SNA
Distance from Accident Site:
Observation Time: 0253 UTC
Direction from Accident Site:
Lowest Cloud Condition: Few / 1500 ft agl
Visibility:  10 Miles
Lowest Ceiling:
Visibility (RVR):
Wind Speed/Gusts: 6 knots /
Turbulence Type Forecast/Actual: 
Wind Direction: 220°
Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual: 
Altimeter Setting: 29.95 inches Hg
Temperature/Dew Point: 21°C / 18°C
Precipitation and Obscuration: No Obscuration; No Precipitation
Departure Point: Santa Ana, CA (SNA)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: Company VFR
Destination: Burbank, CA (BUR)
Type of Clearance: VFR
Departure Time: 1945 PDT
Type of Airspace: Class C

Airport Information

Airport: JOHN WAYNE AIRPORT-ORANGE COUN (SNA)
Runway Surface Type: Asphalt
Airport Elevation: 56 ft
Runway Surface Condition: Dry
Runway Used: N/A
IFR Approach: None
Runway Length/Width:
VFR Approach/Landing: None

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: 33.675556, -117.868333 (est)

Fatal accident occurred July 09, 2019 near Monroe-Walton County Airport (D73), Georgia

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. 

MONROE, Georgia — The pilot who died in a plane crash at the Monroe-Walton County Airport was a pillar of the local aviation community.

Multiple sources have identified the victim as Jason Cyrus “Cy” Nunnally, who owned fixed-base operator Fair Weather Flights. The company handled fuel sales, hangar leasing, flight training and other services at the Monroe-Walton County Airport.

Nunnally was injured late Tuesday afternoon when the single-engine plane he was flying crashed yards from the runway at the airport. He was transported to Piedmont Walton Hospital, where he died.

Kathleen Bergen, a spokeswoman for the Federal Aviation Administration in Atlanta, confirmed the FAA is investigating the crash.

“The National Transportation Safety Board will determine the probable cause of the accident, which can take a year or longer,” Bergen said.

The company started in 2004 as a commercial helicopter flight service, according to its website, and expanded with the fixed-wing maintenance facility at the airport.

Police Chief R.V. Watts said Nunnally had been working on a plane that belonged to someone else. Nunnally taxied down the runway and circled back to land when the plane came to earth against a bank between the runway and the fence that separates airport property from Richard Parsons Drive.

Coroner Joe Page said the FAA remained on scene Wednesday after the plane was moved to a hangar at the airport.

Page said the Georgia Bureau of Investigation would be conducting an autopsy.

Nunnally also operated Fair Weather Farms, an event space on Mount Paran Church Road in Walton County. In a Facebook post, the business issued a statement Wednesday: “This morning we woke with broken hearts, unanswered questions and an emptiness we could have never expected. We know the pain everyone is feeling and know how many lives are affected by our tragic loss.”

Original article ➤ http://www.waltontribune.com



MONROE, Georgia (FOX 5 Atlanta) - Police in Monroe, Georgia said the pilot whose plane crashed near the airport Tuesday afternoon has died.

It happened near the Monroe-Walton County Airport at around 5:27 p.m. According to the Monroe police chief, the pilot had been working on the single-engine plane and had just done a test flight when it crashed during an attempted landed.

Rescue crews rushed the pilot to Piedmont Walton Hospital, trying to revive him on the way, but police said he was dead upon arrival.

Monroe-Walton County Airport is a public-use airport located about 35 miles east of Atlanta.

The crash remains under investigation.

Story and video ➤ http://www.fox5atlanta.com


Jason Cyrus "Cy" Nunnally, age 38 of Monroe, passed away on July 9th, 2019. He was born in Atlanta on December 22, 1980. 

Surviving members of Cy's family are, wife, Nichole Hanson Nunnally of Monroe; father and mother, John and Nancy Nunnally of Monroe; sister and brother-in-law, Jessica and Paul Rosenthal of Monroe; brother, Lee Nunnally of Social Circle, grandmother, Nannette Davis of Loganville; nieces, Bella and Emma Rosenthal; nephew, Peyton Hanson; father-in-law and mother-in-law, Jerome and Elaine Hanson of Monroe; sister-in-law, Tracy Hanson of Monroe; beloved companions, Dora, Diego, George and Smith; and numerous aunts and uncles.

Cy had a servant's heart and was giving and helpful to all he met. He was passionate about his family, his pets, his flying, his brothers at Fergus Masonic Lodge #135 and his cooking. He was also excited that he had recently become a Shriner. He was the owner and operator of Fair Weather Flights which served as the FBO at the Monroe-Walton County Airport (D73). All who knew him loved him and will miss him dearly.

Those interested are asked to make donations in Cy's honor to the Shriners Hospitals for Children.

Funeral Services will be held on Sunday July 14th, 2019 at 3:00 PM at 1025 Church, 1025 E. Spring St, Monroe, with the Rev. Brian Krawczyk and the Rev. Brant Callaway officiating. A private interment will follow at a later date. 

Meadows Funeral Home was in charge of the arrangements. 

Visitation
July 13, 2019 From 5:00 pm to 8:00 pm
Meadows Funeral Home

Funeral Service
July 14, 2019 at 3:00 pm
1025 Church
1025 East Spring Street
Monroe, Georgia 



The pilot who was killed in Tuesday’s single-engine plane crash in Monroe has been identified as Cy Nunnally, a native son and much-beloved member of the community. Generous Warren Lodge No. 20, shared the news on it’s Facebook page and asked for prayers for the family. He also was currently the Worshipful at Master Fergus Lodge No. 135. Walton County Sheriff’s Office also asked for prayers for the family, noting, “Our hearts are broken for this family who are our friends and are huge supporters of public safety. Please keep this family in your every thought and your continued prayers.”

An emotional Monroe Police Chief R.V. Watts, who refrained from giving the name of the pilot, said it had shaken up the police department as he was close to the department.

“One of our officers is actually related to him, so you can imagine how it’s affecting us. The majority of the law enforcement community knows him.”

The Nunnally family is well known in the community and condolences and prayers began pouring in on social media as soon as the word got out.

The FAA (Federal Aviation Administration) and NTSB (National Transportation Safety Board) had been notified immediately and had investigators on the way. Watts said it appeared that the pilot was working on the plane for somebody else, and appeared to have taken off and was returning to land when the plane went down, crashing into a mound just before the runway.

Watts said Monroe emergency personnel were dispatched after someone called 911 and arrived on scene at about 5:41 p.m. Life-saving steps began immediately and a life-flight helicopter was called. However, at 6:09 p.m. when paramedics were unable to stabilize him at the scene, he was transported to Piedmont Walton with hopes he could be stabilized there before being flown to a trauma center. Sadly, he did not survive.

Update:

Monroe Police Chief R.V Watts confirmed that the pilot of the small aircraft did not survive his injuries. His name is not being released at this time until all next of kin has been notified. Watts said the FFA and NTSB has been notified and is on route to investigate. He said the single-engine plane did not belong to the pilot.

Update: One person has been transported to Piedmont Walton in a critical condition following a single-engine airplane crash at Monroe Airport. There were no other passengers on board. The FAA has been called in and is on route to investigate.

Monroe first responders were on the scene of a plane crash near Monroe Airport just before 6 p.m. on Tuesday, July 9, 2019. Monroe Police Fire and EMS are on the scene and the road has been closed off at Richard Parsons Dr. on Pannell Road.

Original article ➤ http://news.monroelocal.org

Loss of Control in Flight: Cessna 421C Golden Eagle, N2655B; fatal accident occurred July 01, 2017 in Catawba, Wisconsin


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

Additional Participating Entities:

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Cessna; Wichita, Kansas
Continental; Mobile, Alabama

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


Investigation Docket - National Transportation Safety Board: https://dms.ntsb.gov/pubdms 
 
http://registry.faa.gov/N2655B



National Traffic Safety Board Senior Air Safety Investigator Alex Lemishko

Location: Catawba, WI
Accident Number: CEN17FA248
Date & Time: 07/01/2017, 0153 CDT
Registration: N2655B
Aircraft: CESSNA 421C
Aircraft Damage: Destroyed
Defining Event: Loss of control in flight
Injuries: 6 Fatal
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal 

On July 1, 2017, about 0153 central daylight time, a Cessna 421C airplane, N2655B, was destroyed during an in-flight breakup near Catawba, Wisconsin. The commercial pilot and five passengers sustained fatal injuries. The airplane was registered to Sky King Flying Service, Inc., and was being operated by the pilot as a Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 personal flight. Dark night instrument meteorological conditions prevailed in the area and an instrument flight rules (IFR) flight plan was filed for the flight, which originated about 0025 from Waukegan National Airport (UGN), Waukegan, Illinois, and was enroute to Warroad International Memorial Airport (RRT), Warroad, Minnesota. 

According to radar data and air traffic control communications information provided by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), the airplane was flying about 10,000 ft mean sea level (msl) when the pilot checked in with Minneapolis Air Route Traffic Control Center at 0117. At 0148, the pilot reported lightning off his left wing. The controller advised the pilot that the weather appeared to be about 35 to 40 miles away and that the airplane should be well clear of it. The pilot responded to the controller that he had onboard weather radar and stated that it "looks like we'll clear it nicely." After the discussion about the weather, there were no further communications from the pilot. At 0152, radar data showed the airplane at 10,400 ft msl, and at 0153, radar data showed the airplane at 9,400 ft msl in a descending right turn. Radar contact was lost shortly thereafter. There were no distress calls from the pilot. Search and rescue operations were started immediately after radar contact was lost.

A witness who was driving home from work reported that he heard engine noise, then did not hear engine noise, then heard engine noise again. He then saw what he thought were the lights of an airplane, and then the lights went out. Another witness, who did not see the airplane, reported that she heard a loud sound. Both witnesses were in the vicinity of the accident location about the time the accident occurred.

Pilot Information

Certificate: Commercial; Private
Age: 70, Male
Airplane Rating(s): Multi-engine Sea; Single-engine Sea
Seat Occupied:
Other Aircraft Rating(s): None
Restraint Used:
Instrument Rating(s): Airplane
Second Pilot Present:No 
Instructor Rating(s): None
Toxicology Performed: Yes
Medical Certification: Class 2 With Waivers/Limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: 08/11/2016
Occupational Pilot: No
Last Flight Review or Equivalent:
Flight Time:  2335 hours (Total, all aircraft), 70 hours (Total, this make and model), 11 hours (Last 30 days, all aircraft), 1 hours (Last 24 hours, all aircraft)

The pilot held a commercial pilot certificate with ratings for airplane single- and multi-engine land and instrument airplane. His most recent FAA second-class medical certificate was issued on August 11, 2016. The pilot's logbook was found in the wreckage. His total flight experience was 2,335 hours, with 463 hours of total night experience. No flight time was logged between October 21, 2016, and May 5, 2017. He had 11.2 hours logged within the last 60 days before the accident, with 1.7 hours of night time, logged on May 7, 2017. His first flight logged in the accident airplane was on September 29, 2015. He logged 70.4 hours total flight experience in the accident airplane, with 7.5 hours of night experience. His most recent flight logged before the accident flight was June 16, 2017, in the accident airplane.

His most recent flight review and instrument proficiency check were completed on June 15, 2017. 




Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: CESSNA
Registration: N2655B
Model/Series: 421C C 
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 1959
Amateur Built: No
Airworthiness Certificate: Normal
Serial Number: 421C0698
Landing Gear Type: Retractable - Tricycle
Seats: 6
Date/Type of Last Inspection:  Unknown
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 7500 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection:
Engines: 2 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time:
Engine Manufacturer: Continental
ELT: Installed, not activated
Engine Model/Series: GTSIO-520-L7
Registered Owner: SKY KING FLYING SERVICE INC
Rated Power: 375 hp
Operator: On file
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None

The pilot was the owner of the airplane. Review of the available airframe, propeller, and engine logbooks revealed that the airplane's most recent annual inspection was completed on September 25, 2015. An entry on the annual inspection document stated that, "aircraft checks satisfactory," and was signed by the pilot on October 10, 2016. No maintenance discrepancies were noted in the available maintenance records.

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: Visual Conditions
Condition of Light: Night/Dark
Observation Facility, Elevation: PBH, 1496 ft msl
Distance from Accident Site: 15 Nautical Miles
Observation Time: 0135 CDT
Direction from Accident Site: 90°
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Visibility:  10 Miles
Lowest Ceiling: Broken / 6000 ft agl
Visibility (RVR):
Wind Speed/Gusts: 3 knots /
Turbulence Type Forecast/Actual: / None
Wind Direction: 360°
Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual: / N/A
Altimeter Setting: 29.96 inches Hg
Temperature/Dew Point: 14°C / 14°C
Precipitation and Obscuration:
Departure Point: Waukegan, IL (UGN)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: IFR
Destination: Warroad, MN (RRT)
Type of Clearance: IFR
Departure Time: 0028 CDT
Type of Airspace: Class G 

Price County Airport (PBH), Phillips, Wisconsin, was located about 15 miles east of the accident site. The 0135, weather observation included wind from 360° at 3 knots, 10 statute miles visibility, a broken ceiling at 600 ft above ground level, temperature 14°C, dew point 14°C, and an altimeter setting of 29.86 inches of mercury. Regional weather radar did not indicate any convection or thunderstorms near to the airplane's flightpath. The accident site was located about 25 miles east of convective activity with no coincidental lightning. 

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Fatal
Aircraft Damage: Destroyed
Passenger Injuries: 5 Fatal
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 6 Fatal
Latitude, Longitude: 45.555278, -90.495000 (est) 

The accident site was located within densely vegetated terrain intersected by a road, with debris scattered on either side of and along the road surface in an area with a radius about 1/4 mile. Tree scars and ground impressions indicated that the main section of the fuselage impacted terrain in a nose-low attitude. The fuselage was found upright and oriented northeast. Both wings were found separated outboard of their respective nacelles. The empennage was not attached to the fuselage and was located about 1,200 ft from the main wreckage. The distribution of the wreckage was consistent with an in-flight breakup of the airplane. Due to the dense vegetation, muddy terrain, and limited horizontal visibility of the accident site, a drone was used to locate parts of the wreckage that could not be found on foot.


Figure 1. Wreckage Distribution

The empennage was separated from the fuselage and located about 1,200 ft from the main wreckage. The rudder was found in three pieces and its trim tab was missing. Most of the vertical stabilizer was missing, except for the top 1.5 ft. The right side of horizontal stabilizer was found largely intact with its leading edge bent downward about 45°. The underside of the horizontal stabilizer exhibited wrinkling. Only a small portion of the right elevator tip was found, and the right elevator trim tab was missing. The entire left side of the horizontal stabilizer, most of the left elevator, and the left elevator trim tab were missing. The outboard portion of the right rear spar was found in the vicinity of the empennage components with no structure attached.

The left engine, serial number 825104-R, was found separated from the airframe and completely submerged in a 9-ft deep crater about 75 ft east of the fuselage. A sump pump was used to reduce the water level in the crater so that the engine could be recovered. The propeller assembly for this engine was not visible and could not be examined at the accident site. A large portion of the engine nacelle was found in the same crater.

The wreckage was recovered from the accident site for further examination. The left horizontal stabilizer; about 3 ft of the elevator and trim tab, and about 5 ft of the outboard left elevator and trim tab were not located.

Cockpit

The flap position could not be determined. The flap handle was found in the "UP" position. The gyroscope rotors for the #1 attitude indicator, #1 horizontal situation indicator (HSI), #2 directional gyro, and #1 turn-and-bank indicator were disassembled and examined. All rotors exhibited signs of spindle rotation. The landing gear and flap handles were both found in the retracted position. The left engine fuel selector handle was found in the right main tank position. The right engine fuel selector handle was found in the right main tank position. The right fuel selector valve was in crossfeed position. The left fuel selector valve was not observed due to impact damage.

Fuselage

The fuselage exhibited severe impact damage and was mostly in one piece with lateral and longitudinal tears in its skin from the forward pressure bulkhead to the end of the fuselage. The fuselage exhibited lateral tears in multiple places and a lateral tear along the right side. Eight seats were found installed in the aircraft.

Left Wing

The left engine nacelle was separated from the left wing about wing station (WS) 87 and WS 110. The left wing from WS 110 outboard was intact. The left wing's leading edge exhibited downward bending and diagonal creases in the area of WS 110 to WS 119. It exhibited upward bending at the trailing edge in the area of WS 110 to WS 119. About 2 ft of the inboard portion of the left aileron remained attached to the wing, and the outboard section of the aileron was missing. The left flap was connected to the nacelle via the push/pull rods, but the flap structure was missing. The outboard left flap track remained attached to the wing. The left speed brake was attached to its wing panel. The wing panel was attached to the wing. The left wing's nacelle was found with the left engine in a crater.

Right Wing

The right engine nacelle remained attached to the fuselage via control cables and wiring. Both wing spars were separated between the fuselage and the nacelle. The outboard portion of the right wing was separated about WS 110 and was intact. The right wing's leading edge exhibited downward bending and diagonal creases in the area of WS 110 to WS 119. It exhibited upward bending at the trailing edge in the area of WS 110 to WS 119. The right aileron separated from the wing in one piece. The right flap was separated from the wing and was not present. Both flap tracks were separated from the wing. The right speed brake was attached to its wing panel.

Empennage

The elevator trim tab actuator extension measured 1.8 inches, consistent with an approximate 10° tab up position. The right horizontal stabilizer was bent down parallel to the chord line about butt line (BL) 20. The right horizontal stabilizer exhibited diagonal creasing from the leading edge to trailing edge, inboard to outboard. The left horizontal stabilizer rear spar was attached from BL 0.0 outboard to BL 49; however, the left horizontal stabilizer structure from approximately BL 20 outboard was not found.

Flight Control Cables

Rudder control continuity was confirmed from the aft rudder bellcrank to the cockpit controls. Elevator control continuity was confirmed from the aft elevator bellcrank to the cockpit controls. Aileron control continuity was confirmed from the cockpit controls to the aileron bellcrank in the fuselage and to the cable separations in the wings. Both left and right aileron cables exhibited tension overload separations near their respective wing separations.

Right Engine

Mud was washed from the engine to facilitate inspection. The intake manifold assembly was intact but was separated from the intake tubes for cylinder Nos. 1, 3, and 5 due to impact forces. The assembly was removed to facilitate further engine inspection. The intake manifold tubes were intact and remained attached to each cylinder. The turbocharger and associated controls separated and remained attached to the airframe nacelle. The engine-mounted exhaust collectors were impact damaged and forced upward against the rocker covers. The turbocharger compressor blades and turbine discharge blades would not turn manually.

The cylinders remained attached at their respective bases, but the lower portion of each cylinder was destroyed by impact forces. All pushrod tubes and pushrods were impact damaged. Cylinder No. 6 exhibited impact damage to the cylinder head, which separated from the barrel. All rocker covers remained attached except on cylinder No. 6. A placard was attached to one rocker cover per cylinder indicating that GAMI fuel injectors were installed. Cylinder Nos. 1-5 were inspected using an electronic lighted borescope. All valves were intact and exhibited normal combustion deposits. All cylinders and piston domes appeared normal. The top sparkplugs were removed and inspected. When compared to a Champion Check-A-Plug chart, the cylinder Nos. 1-5 sparkplugs appeared normal in coloration and wear. The No. 6 cylinder sparkplug was contaminated and could not be inspected.

The left and right magnetos separated but remained in place connected to their respective ignition harnesses. The magneto mounting rings were broken at the magneto hold washer. The ignition harness leads were cut and impact damaged. The magnetos were not tested for operation. The engine could not be rotated manually due to impact damage to the oil sump, which bound the crankshaft. The oil sump was mostly destroyed and was crushed upward around the crankshaft throws. The oil pump remained attached and was crushed upward. The oil cooler was impact damaged. The oil filter separated and was not recovered.

The engine-driven fuel pump separated and was attached to fuel hoses and the mounting ring was damaged. The drive coupling remained in the displaced fuel pump gear. The gear and coupling were removed from the crankcase mounting and inspected. The drive coupling was intact but bent. The fuel pump was disassembled and inspected. The fuel pump rotated smoothly when manually driven. The impeller blades were intact. No fuel was present in the fuel pump cavity. The fuel manifold valve and fuel lines remained attached and intact. The individual fuel lines were bent due to impact forces. The fuel metering unit and throttle body remained attached to the airframe nacelle.

The starter motor was not recovered. The starter adapter was attached and was impact damaged at the mount. The engine-driven alternator was impact damaged. The alternator mount was impact damaged, but the alternator remained in place. The instrument air pump separated and was not recovered. The instrument air pump drive remained attached to the accessory gear. The pump drive was impact damaged but intact. The propeller governor separated and was not recovered.



Left Engine

Mud was washed from the engine to facilitate inspection. The impact damaged intercooler was inspected. The manifold tubes separated at the attach points on each cylinder head and were not recovered. The engine-mounted exhaust collectors were impact damaged. The turbocharger compressor blades, and turbine discharge blades would not turn manually. The upper deck pressure system separated and was not recovered.

The cylinders remained attached at their respective bases. The cooling fins on the top and bottom of each cylinder were damaged. All pushrod tubes and pushrods were intact and in place, and all rocker covers remained attached. Placards on each cylinder indicated that GAMI fuel injectors were installed. All fuel injectors separated except those mounted in cylinder Nos. 1 and 5. A lighted electronic borescope inspection was performed. The pistons in cylinder Nos. 5 and 6 were too high in each cylinder to allow inspection. The engine could not be rotated manually. Cylinder Nos. 3 and 4 were full of mud and could not be inspected. Cylinder Nos. 1 and 2 intake and exhaust valves were intact and exhibited normal combustion signatures. The top sparkplugs were removed and inspected. Sparkplugs from cylinder Nos. 4, 5, and 6 were damaged and the barrels separated from the base. When compared to a Champion Check-A-Plug chart, the sparkplugs from cylinder Nos. 1, 3, and 5 appeared normal in coloration and wear. The sparkplugs from cylinder Nos. 2, 4, and 5 were contaminated with mud and could not be inspected.

The left magneto separated except for the mounting ring and a portion of the internal drive. The right magneto separated and was not recovered. The ignition harness leads were found cut and impact damaged. The oil sump was impact damaged and the left rear corner was breached. The oil pump was attached with impact damage and the pump gears were exposed. The oil cooler separated and was not recovered. The remote-mounted oil filter separated and was not recovered. The engine-driven fuel pump was attached and the fuel hoses and fittings were damaged. The fuel pump was removed and disassembled. The drive coupling was intact. The fuel pump could be manually rotated, but mud inside the pump housing resulted in rotation difficulty. The impeller blades were intact. No fuel was present in the fuel pump cavity. The fuel manifold valve and fuel lines separated and were not recovered. The fuel metering unit and throttle body remained attached to the airframe nacelle.

The starter motor separated but was recovered. The starter adapter was attached and had impact damage to the starter motor mount. The engine driven alternator separated and was not recovered. The instrument air pump was not recovered. The instrument air pump drive remained attached to the accessory gear. The pump drive was inspected and was intact. The propeller governor separated and was not recovered.

Teardown Examinations of Engines, Turbochargers, and Propellers

Both engines and their respective turbocharger components were transported to Continental Motors, Mobile, Alabama, for teardown and analytical inspections. Teardown examinations of both the left and right engines showed heavy impact and water damage. No preimpact anomalies were noted during the examinations of the engines. Teardown examination of the turbochargers exhibited characteristics of normal operation with no discrepancies noted that would have prevented or degraded normal turbocharger operation before the in-flight breakup/impact. Damage to both engines and their respective turbochargers was consistent with high impact forces. For more detailed information, see the engine teardown and turbocharger examination report in the public docket for this accident.

The propeller assemblies were transported to McCauley Propellers, Wichita, Kansas, for teardown and analytical inspections. Teardown examinations of both left and right propellers showed damage resulting from the impact sequence. There were no indications of any type of propeller failure or malfunction before the breakup and impact. Both the left and right propellers displayed signatures consistent with rotation at impact. Exact engine power levels were not determined. Both propellers displayed impact signature markings or component positions indicating that the blades were operating at about a 15° reference angle measured at the 30-inch blade radial station during the impact sequence. 

Medical And Pathological Information

The Hennepin County Medical Examiner's Office, Minneapolis, Minnesota, performed an autopsy of the pilot. The cause of death was blunt trauma.

Toxicology testing performed at the FAA Forensic Sciences Laboratory identified no drugs, ethanol, or carbon monoxide.