Monday, March 02, 2020

Cessna 150M, N407WJ: Fatal accident occurred February 28, 2020 near Port Isabel-Cameron County Airport (KPIL) , Texas

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 Entity:
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; San Antonio, Texas
Textron Aviation; Wichita, Kansas

Location: Port Isabel, TX
Accident Number: CEN20FA108
Date & Time: 02/28/2020, 1949 CST
Registration: N407WJ
Aircraft: Cessna 150
Injuries: 1 Fatal
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal 

On February 28, 2020 at 1949 central standard time, a Cessna 150M airplane, N407WJ, impacted terrain about 1.5 miles east of the Port Isabel-Cameron County Airport (PIL), Port Isabel, Texas. The private pilot was fatally injured, and the airplane was destroyed. The airplane was operated by the pilot as a Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 personal flight.

According to the airplane's co-owner, about 1530, the pilot asked him if he'd like to perform some touch and go landings at PIL. The co-owner stated he could not go on the flight.

Preliminary air traffic control radar data showed the airplane departed runway 13 about 1943. The airplane conducted one left traffic pattern flight and it could not be determined if the airplane performed a touch and go, or a go-around. The airplane then turned left crosswind for runway 13, and the last radar target indicated the airplane was at 250 ft above ground level and 125 knots ground speed.

The airplane wreckage was located on March 1, 2020.

Postaccident examination revealed the airplane impacted mesquite trees and terrain, and a postimpact fire ensued. The outboard 8 ft of the left wing and portions of the nose landing gear were located near the initial impact point. The cockpit, fuselage, right wing, and empennage were consumed by fire. Flight control cable continuity was established from the cockpit to all flight control surfaces.

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Cessna
Registration: N407WJ
Model/Series: 150M
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: Night
Observation Facility, Elevation: PIL, 18 ft msl
Observation Time: 1953 CST
Distance from Accident Site: 1 Nautical Miles
Temperature/Dew Point: 13°C / 7°C
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: 7 knots / , 120°
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility:  10 Miles
Altimeter Setting: 30.36 inches Hg
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Departure Point: Port Isabel, TX (PIL)
Destination: Port Isabel, TX (PIL)

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Fatal
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Fire: On-Ground
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 1 Fatal
Latitude, Longitude: 26.165833, -97.330278 (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


  1. Nothing looks strange:

    1. Was not found right away. Minimal news coverage: