Saturday, February 01, 2020

Parsons Two Place #1, N446PS: Accident occurred December 08, 2019 in Naguabo, Puerto Rico

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

Additional Participating Entity:

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; San Juan, Puerto Rico

Aviation Accident Preliminary Report - National Transportation Safety Board:

Location: Naguabo, PR
Accident Number: ERA20LA051
Date & Time: 12/08/2019, 1405 AST
Registration: N446PS
Aircraft: PARSONS Two Place #1
Injuries: 1 Serious
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal 

On December 8, 2019, about 1405 Atlantic standard time, an experimental amateur built Parsons Two Place #1 gyroplane, N446PS, was substantially damaged when it impacted terrain near Naguabo, Puerto Rico. The private pilot sustained serious injuries. The gyroplane was registered to and operated by the pilot as a Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 personal flight. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the accident and no flight plan was filed for the flight. The flight originated from Jose Aponte De La Torre Airport (RVR), Ceiba, Puerto Rico, about 1350.

According to the pilot, about 10 minutes after departure while cruising 55-60 mph, he began to feel a vibration in the airframe and an "abnormal drag." He reduced the engine power, and about that time, he felt the propeller severe the rudder cables. As he looked back, he saw the rudder separate from the airframe and the gyroplane began to spin. The pilot shutdown the engine to reduce the torque and attempted to maintain control as the gyroplane rapidly descended until it impacted the ground.

According to Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) airworthiness records, the gyroplane was manufactured by the pilot in 2013. It was a two place, open cockpit, gyroplane, equipped with a Rotax 912 S2 engine. According to the airframe maintenance records, the most recent condition inspection was completed on June 23, 2019, at a total time of 62.0 hours. At the time of the accident, the Hobbs meter indicated 66.8 hours.

Examination of the wreckage by an FAA inspector revealed that the gyroplane came to rest on the right side. The main rotor blades were impact damaged and cut branches were located nearby. The propeller blades remained attached to the engine and the engine remained attached to the airframe. The rudder was not located after the accident.

The wreckage was retained for further examination.

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: PARSONS
Registration: N446PS 
Model/Series: Two Place #1
Aircraft Category: Gyroplane
Amateur Built: Yes
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: TJNR, 38 ft msl
Observation Time: 1353 AST
Distance from Accident Site: 3 Nautical Miles
Temperature/Dew Point: 29°C / 22°C
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: 7 knots / , 60°
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility:  10 Miles
Altimeter Setting: 29.99 inches Hg
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Departure Point: Ceiba, PR (RVR)

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Serious
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 1 Serious
Latitude, Longitude: 18.240833, -65.696944

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