Tuesday, March 03, 2020

Loss of Control on Ground: Cub Crafters CCX-2000, N3XC; Accident occurred February 28, 2020 at Sonoma Valley Airport (0Q3), Schellville, Sonoma County, California

Aviation Accident Final Report - National Transportation Safety Board

Additional Participating Entity: 
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Oakland, California

Investigation Docket - National Transportation Safety Board:

Hangar C403 LLC

Location: Sonoma/Schellville, CA
Accident Number: WPR20CA103
Date & Time: 02/28/2020, 1245 PST
Registration: N3XC
Aircraft: CubCrafters FX-3
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Loss of control on ground
Injuries: 2 None
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal 


The pilot reported that, during a wheel landing in the tailwheel-equipped airplane, he inadvertently applied left brake pressure, and the airplane veered off the edge of the runway into tall grass. The pilot's corrective action was ineffective, and the airplane subsequently impacted an irrigation ditch, which resulted in substantial damage to the nose and firewall. The pilot reported that there were no preaccident mechanical malfunctions or failures with the airplane that would have precluded normal operation.

Probable Cause and Findings

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be:
The pilot's inadvertent activation of the left brake during the landing roll, which resulted in a loss of directional control, a runway excursion, and collision with a ditch.


Personnel issues Aircraft control - Pilot
Aircraft Directional control - Not attained/maintained
Aircraft Brake - Unintentional use/operation
Personnel issues Use of equip/system - Pilot
Environmental issues Sloped/uneven terrain - Effect on operation

Factual Information

History of Flight

Landing-landing roll Miscellaneous/other
Landing-landing roll Loss of control on ground (Defining event)
Landing-landing roll Runway excursion
Landing-landing roll Attempted remediation/recovery
Landing-landing roll Collision with terr/obj (non-CFIT)

Pilot Information

Certificate: Private
Age: 63, Male
Airplane Rating(s): Multi-engine Land; Single-engine Land; Single-engine Sea
Seat Occupied: Front
Other Aircraft Rating(s): None
Restraint Used:
Instrument Rating(s): Airplane
Second Pilot Present: No
Instructor Rating(s): None
Toxicology Performed: No
Medical Certification: Class 3 With Waivers/Limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: 02/24/2020
Occupational Pilot: No
Last Flight Review or Equivalent: 03/29/2019
Flight Time:  3600 hours (Total, all aircraft), 86 hours (Total, this make and model), 3500 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft), 8 hours (Last 90 days, all aircraft), 5 hours (Last 30 days, all aircraft), 2 hours (Last 24 hours, all aircraft) 

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: CubCrafters
Registration: N3XC
Model/Series: FX-3
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 2019
Amateur Built:Yes 
Airworthiness Certificate: Experimental
Serial Number: CCX-2000-0042
Landing Gear Type: Tailwheel
Seats: 2
Date/Type of Last Inspection: 01/22/2020, Condition
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 2000 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection:
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 188 Hours at time of accident
Engine Manufacturer: Superior
ELT: C91 installed, activated, did not aid in locating accident
Engine Model/Series: CC363i
Registered Owner: Hangar C-403, LLC
Rated Power: 185 hp
Operator: Hangar C-403, LLC
Operating Certificate(s) Held:None 

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: Visual Conditions
Condition of Light: Day
Observation Facility, Elevation: KO69, 89 ft msl
Distance from Accident Site: 7 Nautical Miles
Observation Time: 1245 PST
Direction from Accident Site: 284°
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Visibility:  10 Miles
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility (RVR):
Wind Speed/Gusts: Light and Variable /
Turbulence Type Forecast/Actual: None / None
Wind Direction: Variable
Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual: N/A / N/A
Altimeter Setting: 30.05 inches Hg
Temperature/Dew Point: 18°C
Precipitation and Obscuration: No Obscuration; No Precipitation
Departure Point: Sonoma/Schellville, CA (0Q3)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Destination: Sonoma/Schellville, CA (0Q3)
Type of Clearance: None
Departure Time: 1240 PST
Type of Airspace:

Airport Information

Airport: Sonoma Valley (0Q3)
Runway Surface Type: Grass/turf
Airport Elevation: 16 ft
Runway Surface Condition: Dry
Runway Used: 25
IFR Approach: None
Runway Length/Width: 2700 ft / 45 ft
VFR Approach/Landing: 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: 38.220000, -122.450000 (est)

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