Saturday, September 12, 2020

Hard Landing: Cessna 182P Skylane, N21488; accident occurred August 17, 2020 at Savannah/Hilton Head International Airport (KSAV), Chatham County, Georgia

Aviation Accident Final Report - National Transportation Safety Board

Additional Participating Entity:
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Richmond, Virgina 

Investigation Docket - National Transportation Safety Board:

Location: Savannah, Georgia
Accident Number: ERA20CA301
Date & Time: August 17, 2020, 09:00 Local
Registration: N21488
Aircraft: Cessna 182
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Hard landing
Injuries: 1 None
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General aviation - Other work use 


The pilot was flying the airplane on a multi-leg cross-country flight, and during a preflight inspection prior to one of the legs the pilot observed wrinkled skin on the right-side fuselage near the engine firewall. A local mechanic believed it to be minor damage and the pilot continued to his destination. Upon arrival, another mechanic noted that the damage appeared to be more serious and a ferry permit was requested. The damage was determined to be substantial and the ferry permit was denied by local Federal Aviation Administration personnel. Although the pilot stated that the damage appeared to be from a landing with the nose gear touching down first, he did not recall any unusual or hard landings during the previous cross-country flight legs. He also stated that he was the only pilot to recently fly the airplane and the damage most likely occurred during his control. 

The damage likely occurred during a hard landing; however, the time and location of the accident could not be determined based on the available information. The pilot reported no mechanical malfunctions or anomalies during the cross-country flights.

Probable Cause and Findings 

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be:
The pilot's inadequate flare, resulting in a hard landing. 


Personnel issues Aircraft control - Pilot
Aircraft Landing flare - Not attained/maintained 

Factual Information

History of Flight

Landing-flare/touchdown Hard landing (Defining event) 

Pilot Information

Certificate: Commercial
Age: 46,Male
Airplane Rating(s): Single-engine land; Multi-engine land
Seat Occupied: Left
Other Aircraft Rating(s): None 
Restraint Used: 3-point
Instrument Rating(s): Airplane; Helicopter
Second Pilot Present: No
Instructor Rating(s): None
Toxicology Performed: No
Medical Certification: Class 2 Without waivers/limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: May 11, 2020
Occupational Pilot: Yes
Last Flight Review or Equivalent:
Flight Time: 5124 hours (Total, all aircraft), 36 hours (Total, this make and model), 3525 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft), 84 hours (Last 90 days, all aircraft), 67 hours (Last 30 days, all aircraft)

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Cessna 
Registration: N21488
Model/Series: 182P 
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 1973
Amateur Built: No
Airworthiness Certificate: Normal
Serial Number: 18261664
Landing Gear Type: Tricycle 
Seats: 4
Date/Type of Last Inspection: February 9, 2020 Annual
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 2348 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection: 182 Hrs
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time:
Engine Manufacturer: Continental
ELT: C91 installed, not activated 
Engine Model/Series: IO-550-D-AP
Registered Owner: 
Rated Power: 300 Horsepower
Operator: Operating Certificate(s) Held: None

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: Unknown
Condition of Light: Not reported
Observation Facility, Elevation: KSAV,51 ft msl
Distance from Accident Site: 0 Nautical Miles
Observation Time: 12:53 Local 
Direction from Accident Site:
Lowest Cloud Condition: Few / 2000 ft AGL Visibility 10 miles
Lowest Ceiling:
Visibility (RVR):
Wind Speed/Gusts: 6 knots / 
Turbulence Type Forecast/Actual: None / None
Wind Direction: 70° 
Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual: N/A / N/A
Altimeter Setting: 30 inches Hg 
Temperature/Dew Point: 27°C / 22°C
Precipitation and Obscuration: No Obscuration; No Precipitation
Departure Point: Monroe, LA (MLU)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Destination: Savannah, GA (SAV)
Type of Clearance: VFR flight following
Departure Time: 07:00 Local
Type of Airspace: Class C

Airport Information

Airport: Savannah Hilton Head Intl SAV
Runway Surface Type: Concrete
Airport Elevation: 51 ft msl 
Runway Surface Condition: Dry
Runway Used: 01 IFR
Approach: None
Runway Length/Width: 7002 ft / 150 ft
VFR Approach/Landing: Full stop

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 None
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries:
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A 
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 1 None
Latitude, Longitude: 32.127498,-81.202224(est)

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