Saturday, May 30, 2020

Aero Commander 500S Shrike, N909AK: Accident occurred May 28, 2020 near Aniak Airport (PANI), Alaska

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Anchorage, Alaska

Aircraft crashed on takeoff into water under unknown circumstances.

State of Alaska

https://registry.faa.gov/N909AK

Date: 28-MAY-20
Time: 23:43:00Z
Regis#: N909AK
Aircraft Make: AERO COMMANDER
Aircraft Model: 500
Event Type: ACCIDENT
Highest Injury: SERIOUS
Aircraft Missing: No
Damage: UNKNOWN
Activity: PUBLIC USE
Flight Phase: TAKEOFF (TOF)
City: ANIAK
State: ALASKA




ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) - A Division of Forestry plane with four people onboard crashed shortly after takeoff in the Western Alaska community of Aniak Thursday, a Forestry spokesperson said.

Gov. Mike Dunleavy made the first public announcement of the incident shortly after 5 p.m. during his third online Town Hall meeting.

"The report that we have is all survived, (with) bumps and bruises," Dunleavy said.

Tim Mowry, with the Alaska Division of Forestry, said he had just learned of the incident when reached minutes later. Mowry said the pilot and three forestry staff on board did not suffer life-threatening injuries, but he did not know to what extent they were injured.

According to an Alaska State Troopers dispatch, the plane was a state-owned Aero Commander 500S Shrike. The pilot, Mark Jordan and three other passengers were all Medevaced to Anchorage with non-life threatening injuries.

NTSB Region Chief Clint Johnson says the crash happened at about 3:43 p.m. The plane came to rest in a body of water. The Aniak airport's runway sits nestled between slight bends in the Kuskokwim River and a slough of the Aniak River. Other small bodies of water are located near Aniak's airport as well.

Photos from Aniak resident Dave Mattson show the yellow State of Alaska plane resting in what appears to be a shallow body of water. Mattson, who owns an automotive store near the airport, was at the community's barge landing when he heard the crash from half a mile away.

"It's a miracle," Mattson said. "I don't see how anyone [survived this]."

By the time he had gotten to the site of the accident, troopers had responded and the passengers were already receiving care.

There is not a staffed fire in the region, Mowry said. He was still gathering more information about the flight and the incident.

https://www.ktuu.com

16 comments:

  1. Could be another misfuel where Jet-A was added instead of 100LL. Crashed shortly after refueling and taking off, diesel fuel and oil reported in the water.

    https://www.adn.com/alaska-news/aviation/2020/05/29/5-hero-teens-first-on-scene-in-aniak-plane-crash-rescue-effort/

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  2. I am at a loss as to why GA aircraft manufacturers and aviation fuel companies do not get with the FAA and mandate a required manufacturer spout and tank receptacle size for AVGAS vs. Jet-A so these things don't happen (and even if that is not the case here, it still happens). Similar to what automotive manufacturers have done for decades with oil companies at the gas pumps with diesel vs. gas.

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    Replies
    1. Jet-A nozzles were made into duck-bill "Hoover nozzle" shape years ago, but sometimes the fueler angles the end to get the Jet-A into the smaller 100LL filler opening. N326CW is an example:

      http://www.kathrynsreport.com/search?q=n326cw&max-results=20&by-date=true

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  3. Never depart without checking the color of your fuel.

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    Replies
    1. A paper blot test might also be a good idea if it was just a top off. Take a look at color for a 50/50 mix experiment with photos here:

      https://www.pilotsofamerica.com/community/threads/avgas-and-jet-a-contamination-results.74702/

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  4. Better yet, stay with the plane and supervise the refueling.

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    Replies
    1. Particularly for Aerostar and Commander/Shrike aircraft, with the known misfuel event histories.

      And it is unreal that any fuel tech would have so little interest in aviation that the obvious differences of piston and turboprop engines would not be immediately recognized (cylinder cooling fins visible and the lack of giant side-discharge exhausts). And of course, markings on fill ports.

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  5. "Damage: UNKNOWN"

    When you find your airplane broken into pieces and resting in a pond it tells me the damage is pretty severe. I don't believe the damage is unknown.

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    Replies
    1. The front fell off and the back fell off. Recovery photo:

      https://www.alaskapublic.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/06/Forestry-600x400.jpg

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    2. Excellent photo. It'll take a lot of duct tape to get that bird back in the air.

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    3. It was a nice Commander. I had taken a picture of it back in September 2019. My dad flew this aircraft reguarly. He wasn't flying it that day.

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  6. I had a 680F Commander with piston engines. It had "Turbo" emblems on the side of the cowlings. One can see that causing confusing with the line guys.

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  7. No preliminary report yet, they missed the two-week goal for that. Fuel sample after recovery would be of interest even if nothing more could be checked.

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  8. NTSB 30 June preliminary report says it was fueled with Jet A, as suspected here in comments.

    https://app.ntsb.gov/pdfgenerator/ReportGeneratorFile.ashx?EventID=20200529X64359&AKey=1&RType=Prelim&IType=LA

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  9. Fuel port was clearly marked:
    "FUEL 100/100LL MINIMUM GRADE
    AVIATION GASOLINE ONLY
    CAPACITY 159.6 US GALLONS"

    ReplyDelete