Thursday, January 09, 2020

Piper PA-28-140 Cherokee Cruiser, N601FL: Fatal accident occurred December 21, 2019 in Evansville, Vanderburgh County, Indiana

This is preliminary information, subject to change, and may contain errors. Any errors in this report will be corrected when the final report has been completed.

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

Additional Participating Entities:
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Indianapolis, Indiana
Piper; Wichita, Kansas

Location: Evansville, IN
Accident Number: CEN20FA038
Date & Time: 12/21/2019, 1514 CDT
Registration: N601FL
Aircraft: Piper PA28
Injuries: 1 Fatal
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal

On December 21, 2019, at 1514 central standard time, a Piper PA-28-140 airplane, N601FL, impacted terrain near Evansville, Indiana, while on landing approach. The private pilot, who was the sole occupant, was fatally injured and the airplane was destroyed. The airplane was registered to N601FL LLC., and operated by the pilot under the provisions of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 as a personal flight. Day, visual meteorological conditions prevailed for the local cross-country, visual flight rules (VFR) flight that departed Evansville Municipal Airport (EVV), Indiana, at 1413.

The pilot departed EVV on a local cross-country flight to conduct practice approaches at Crawford County Airport (RSV), Indiana, before returning to EVV. The pilot requested to return to EVV about 10 miles short of reaching RSV. The flight was subsequently cleared to land on runway 18 at EVV. According to EVV Tower personnel, the pilot did not report any difficulties with the airplane prior to the accident. Witnesses observed the airplane enter a right descending turn before impacting a field about 2 miles north of the approach end of runway 18. One witness reported the airplane's engine was running as it passed over him before beginning the descending turn to the west.

The initial impact was made with the right wingtip in a nearly 90 degree right bank, as identified by the green beacon lens at the initial impact point and the location of impact marks made by the main landing gear. The propeller was separated from the crankshaft propeller flange and located in the debris field. One blade exhibited leading edge polishing and aft bending. The other blade exhibited forward bending about mid span. The six propeller retention bolts were sheared at the propeller flange and several bolts exhibited torsional bending. The wreckage was recovered for additional examination. 

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Piper
Model/Series: PA28 140
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Amateur Built: No
Operator:On file
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site:
Condition of Light:
Observation Facility, Elevation: KEVV
Observation Time:
Distance from Accident Site:
Temperature/Dew Point:
Lowest Cloud Condition:
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction:
Lowest Ceiling:
Altimeter Setting:
Type of Flight Plan Filed:
Departure Point: Evansville, IN (EVV)
Destination: Evansville, IN (EVV)

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Fatal
Aircraft Damage: Destroyed
Passenger Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 1 Fatal
Latitude, Longitude: 38.095833, -87.540556 (est)

Those who may have information that might be relevant to the National Transportation Safety Board investigation may contact them by email, and any friends and family who want to contact investigators about the accident should email 

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