Thursday, April 09, 2020

Collision During Takeoff: AutoGyro GmbH MTO Sport, N498AG; accident occurred October 12, 2019 in Montgomery, Texas

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

Additional Participating Entity:

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Houston, Texas

Aviation Accident Final Report - National Transportation Safety Board:

Investigation Docket - National Transportation Safety Board:

Location: Montgomery, TX
Accident Number: CEN20TA007
Date & Time: 10/12/2019, 1530 CDT
Registration: N498AG
Aircraft: AutoGyro GmbH MTO Sport
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Collision during takeoff/land
Injuries: 1 Serious, 1 Minor
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal 

On October 12, 2019, about 1530 central daylight time, an amateur-built experimental AutoGyro GmbH MTO Sport gyroplane, N498AG, impacted trees during takeoff from a remote field near Montgomery, Texas. The sport pilot sustained serious injuries and the passenger sustained minor injuries. The gyroplane sustained substantial damage. The gyroplane was registered to and operated by the pilot under the provisions of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 as a visual flight rules personal flight. Day visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the accident, and no flight plan was filed. The flight originated from a private ranch near Hempstead, Texas, about 1445, and was destined for the Livingston Municipal Airport (00R), Livingston, Texas.

The pilot reported that while inflight, his electronic tablet he was utilizing for navigation failed. The pilot decided to land to a field in a private ranch and troubleshoot the electronic tablet. After troubleshooting the tablet, the pilot departed from the field to the northwest. During the takeoff toward an opening in the trees, the pilot realized that was not adequate obstacle clearance. He turned to the south and the gyroplane impacted trees. After impacting the trees, the gyroplane came to rest in a nose-down profile on the left side of the fuselage as shown below in figure 1. The pilot and passenger were able to egress from the wreckage without further incident.

The gyroplane was not equipped with an emergency locator transmitter, nor was it required to be. After the accident, hunters on the property transported the occupants to a highway where first responders were contacted.

The gyroplane sustained substantial damage to the main rotor system, the fuselage, and the empennage. The pilot reported no preimpact mechanical malfunctions or failures with the airframe and engine that would have precluded normal operation.

In the safety recommendation section of the NTSB Accident/Incident Reporting Form 6120.1, the pilot reported that the accident could have been prevented by "measuring the length of the field before taking off."

Pilot Information

Certificate: Sport Pilot
Age: 41, Male
Airplane Rating(s): None
Seat Occupied:Front 
Other Aircraft Rating(s): Gyroplane
Restraint Used:
Instrument Rating(s): None
Second Pilot Present: No
Instructor Rating(s): None
Toxicology Performed:No 
Medical Certification: Sport Pilot Without Waivers/Limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam:
Occupational Pilot: No
Last Flight Review or Equivalent: 11/19/2017
Flight Time:  (Estimated) 207.9 hours (Total, all aircraft), 199 hours (Total, this make and model), 167.2 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft), 8 hours (Last 90 days, all aircraft), 4 hours (Last 30 days, all aircraft), 3 hours (Last 24 hours, all aircraft)

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: AutoGyro GmbH
Registration: N498AG
Model/Series: MTO Sport
Aircraft Category: Gyroplane
Year of Manufacture: 2014
Amateur Built: Yes
Airworthiness Certificate: Experimental
Serial Number: M01047
Landing Gear Type: Tricycle
Seats: 2
Date/Type of Last Inspection: 09/05/2018, Annual
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 1320 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection:
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 188.2 Hours at time of accident
Engine Manufacturer: Rotax Aircraft Engines
ELT: Not installed
Engine Model/Series: 914UL
Registered Owner: On file
Rated Power:110 hp 
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: KCXO, 245 ft msl
Distance from Accident Site: 15 Nautical Miles
Observation Time: 1953 UTC
Direction from Accident Site:97° 
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Visibility:  10 Miles
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility (RVR):
Wind Speed/Gusts: 7 knots /
Turbulence Type Forecast/Actual: None / None
Wind Direction: 40°
Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual: N/A / N/A
Altimeter Setting: 30.13 inches Hg
Temperature/Dew Point: 20°C / 7°C
Precipitation and Obscuration:
Departure Point: Hempstead, TX
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Destination: Livingston, TX (00R)
Type of Clearance: None
Departure Time: 1445 CDT
Type of Airspace:Class G 

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Serious
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: 1 Minor
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 1 Serious, 1 Minor
Latitude, Longitude: 30.336667, -95.679444 (est)

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