Sunday, January 12, 2020

Loss of Control on Ground: Piper PA-18-150 Super Cub, N4785F; accident occurred September 23, 2019 at Boulder Municipal Airport (KBDU), Boulder County, Colorado

Additional Participating Entity: 
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Denver, Colorado

Aviation Accident Factual 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/N4785F


Location: Boulder, CO
Accident Number: GAA19CA572
Date & Time: 09/23/2019, 1420 MDT
Registration: N4785F
Aircraft: Piper PA18
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Loss of control on ground
Injuries: 2 None
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal 

The pilot in the tailwheel-equipped airplane reported that, he made a normal three-point landing. During the landing roll, the airplane ground-looped to the left, and the left wing struck the ground.

The airplane sustained substantial damage to the left wing spar and the rudder.

The airport's METAR reported that about the time of the accident, the wind was calm.

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

Pilot Information

Certificate: Airline Transport; Flight Instructor; Commercial
Age: 57, Male
Airplane Rating(s): Multi-engine Land; Single-engine Land
Seat Occupied: Front
Other Aircraft Rating(s): Glider
Restraint Used:  
Instrument Rating(s): Airplane
Second Pilot Present: No
Instructor Rating(s): Airplane Multi-engine; Airplane Single-engine; Instrument Airplane
Toxicology Performed: No
Medical Certification: Class 1 With Waivers/Limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: 05/06/2019
Occupational Pilot: Yes
Last Flight Review or Equivalent: 08/16/2019
Flight Time:   (Estimated) 20403 hours (Total, all aircraft), 24 hours (Total, this make and model), 6169 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft), 58 hours (Last 90 days, all aircraft), 5 hours (Last 30 days, all aircraft), 0.5 hours (Last 24 hours, all aircraft) 

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Piper
Registration: N4785F
Model/Series: PA18 150
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 1962
Amateur Built: No
Airworthiness Certificate: Normal
Serial Number: 18-7906
Landing Gear Type: Tailwheel
Seats: 2
Date/Type of Last Inspection: 06/07/2019, Annual
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 1750 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection:
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 15624.7 Hours at time of accident
Engine Manufacturer: Lycoming
ELT: Installed, not activated
Engine Model/Series: O-360-A3A
Registered Owner: Soaring Society Of Boulder Inc
Rated Power: 180 hp
Operator: Soaring Society Of Boulder Inc
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: Visual Conditions
Condition of Light: Day
Observation Facility, Elevation: KBDU, 5289 ft msl
Distance from Accident Site: 1 Nautical Miles
Observation Time: 2012 UTC
Direction from Accident Site: 133°
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Visibility: 10 Miles
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility (RVR):
Wind Speed/Gusts: Calm /
Turbulence Type Forecast/Actual:
Wind Direction:
Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual: 
Altimeter Setting: 30.08 inches Hg
Temperature/Dew Point: 25°C / -2°C
Precipitation and Obscuration: No Obscuration; No Precipitation
Departure Point: Boulder, CO (BDU)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Destination: Boulder, CO (BDU)
Type of Clearance: None
Departure Time: 1338 MDT
Type of Airspace: Class G

Airport Information

Airport: Boulder Muni (BDU)
Runway Surface Type: Asphalt
Airport Elevation: 5288 ft
Runway Surface Condition: Dry
Runway Used: 08
IFR Approach: None
Runway Length/Width: 4100 ft / 75 ft
VFR Approach/Landing: Full Stop; Traffic Pattern

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: 40.039444, -105.226111 (est)

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