Sunday, May 17, 2020

System/Component Malfunction/Failure (Non-Power): Cessna 180, N3125D; accident occurred June 22, 2018 in Fairbanks, Alaska

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

Additional Participating Entity:

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

Aviation Accident Factual Report - National Transportation Safety Board:

Investigation Docket - National Transportation Safety Board:

Location: Fairbanks, AK
Accident Number: ANC18LA048
Date & Time: 06/22/2018, 1730 AKD
Registration: N3125D
Aircraft: CESSNA 180
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Sys/Comp malf/fail (non-power)
Injuries: 2 None
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal 

On June 22, 2018, about 1730 Alaska daylight time, a tailwheel equipped Cessna 180 airplane, N3125D, sustained substantial damage during an off-airport landing at Upper St George Creek, about 50 miles south of Fairbanks, Alaska. The airplane was registered to and operated by the pilot as a 14 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 91 visual flight rules personal flight when the accident occurred. The private pilot and passenger were uninjured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and no flight plan had been filed. The flight departed Fairbanks International Airport (PAFA), Fairbanks, Alaska about 1700.

According to the pilot, he was landing with a right crosswind and after touchdown, as the airplane began to decelerate, he applied left brake in an effort to maintain directional control. He stated that the left rudder/brake pedal was "soft" and traveled to its full forward limit and directional control was lost. The airplane weathervaned into the wind and skidded sideways before the left main wheel went off the cleared landing area and into brush. The left wing and left horizontal stabilizer subsequently impacted terrain, which resulted in substantial damage.

Upon exiting the airplane, the pilot found the brake line had separated at the compression fitting near the brake caliper where the brake line transitioned from a rigid line to a flexible line.

The brake line tube and fitting hardware was removed from the airplane and sent to the NTSB Materials Laboratory in Washington DC for further evaluation. The interior surface of the failed end had circumferential marks up to 0.136 inch from the end consistent with the formation of a flared end with a flaring tool. The sleeve was trapped within the nut from the failed end, and deposits of gray metal appearing consistent with deformed brake tube material was observed deposited on internal threads of the nut up to 3 threads from the end of the sleeve.

According to Federal Aviation Administration Advisory Circular AC 43-13-1B, Acceptable Methods, Techniques, and Practices – Aircraft Inspection and Repair, a double flare is used on soft aluminum tubing having a 3/8-inch outside diameter or less. No evidence of folded walls consistent with a double flare was noted at either end of the submitted brake line tube.

No records could be located that showed the manufacture or assembly date of the fractured brake line components.

Pilot Information

Certificate: Private
Age:45, Male 
Airplane Rating(s): Single-engine Land
Seat Occupied: Left
Other Aircraft Rating(s): None
Restraint Used:
Instrument Rating(s): None
Second Pilot Present:No 
Instructor Rating(s): None
Toxicology Performed: No
Medical Certification: Class 3 Without Waivers/Limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: 04/30/2018
Occupational Pilot: No
Last Flight Review or Equivalent: 04/30/2017
Flight Time:  181 hours (Total, all aircraft), 132 hours (Total, this make and model), 145 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft), 12 hours (Last 90 days, all aircraft), 5 hours (Last 30 days, all aircraft), 1 hours (Last 24 hours, all aircraft)

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: CESSNA
Registration: N3125D
Model/Series: 180
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 1955
Amateur Built:No 
Airworthiness Certificate: Normal
Serial Number: 31923
Landing Gear Type: Tailwheel
Seats: 4
Date/Type of Last Inspection: 02/07/2018, Annual
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 2550 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection: 11 Hours
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 3192.8 Hours as of last inspection
Engine Manufacturer: CONT MOTOR
ELT: Installed, not activated
Engine Model/Series: O-470 SERIES
Registered Owner: On file
Rated Power: 225 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: PAFA, 432 ft msl
Distance from Accident Site: 37 Nautical Miles
Observation Time: 0053 UTC
Direction from Accident Site: 3°
Lowest Cloud Condition: Scattered / 4500 ft agl
Visibility:  10 Miles
Lowest Ceiling: Broken / 6000 ft agl
Visibility (RVR):
Wind Speed/Gusts: 14 knots / 18 knots
Turbulence Type Forecast/Actual: / Unknown
Wind Direction: 280°
Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual: / Unknown
Altimeter Setting: 29.91 inches Hg
Temperature/Dew Point: 20°C / 11°C
Precipitation and Obscuration: No Obscuration; No Precipitation
Departure Point: FAIRBANKS, AK (FAI)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Destination: Fairbanks, AK (AK7)
Type of Clearance: None
Departure Time: 1700 AKD
Type of Airspace: Class E

Airport Information

Runway Surface Type: Dirt
Airport Elevation: 1720 ft
Runway Surface Condition: Dry; Vegetation
Runway Used: N/A
IFR Approach: None
Runway Length/Width:
VFR Approach/Landing: Full Stop

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: 64.192778, -147.946111 (est)

1 comment:

  1. Careless assembly,little wonder the pipe had migrated loose,the flare was stuck inside the nut as it had not bottomed out properly,for goodness sake this is basic stuff.