Monday, November 23, 2020

Cessna TU206G Turbo Stationair II, N878AH: Accident occurred November 21, 2020 near Twentynine Palms Airport (KTNP), San Bernardino County, California

This is preliminary information, subject to change, and may contain errors. Any errors in this report will be corrected when the final report has been completed. 

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

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

TV Specialists Inc

Location: Twentynine Palms, CA 
Accident Number: WPR21LA059
Date & Time: November 21, 2020, 12:50 Local
Registration: N878AH
Aircraft: Cessna TU206
Injuries: 6 None
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General aviation - Personal

On November 21, 2020, about 1250 Pacific standard time, a Cessna, TU206, N878AH, sustained substantial damage when it was involved in an accident in Twentynine Palms,
California. The private pilot and the five passengers onboard were not injured. The airplane was operated as a Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 personal flight.

The pilot reported that this was the first flight after the annual inspection had been completed. About two hours into the flight, the aircraft engine began to run roughly. The pilot noticed that exhaust gas temperatures (EGT) were operating within normal parameters, except for a lower than-expected temperature in the No. 2 cylinder. Additionally, the pilot recalled that he was unable to sustain normal cruise flight.

While troubleshooting the rough running engine, the pilot moved the fuel selector from the “Left” tank to the “Right” tank position and a total loss of engine power occurred. The pilot stated that typically, when he moves the fuel selector from one tank to the other, the engine will momentarily lose power, which he estimated to be about 3 seconds, because the selector must travel through the “Off” position. However, during this cross-country flight, there was nearly a 45 second loss of power before the engine surged back to full power.

The pilot elected to continue the flight to his destination. About 45 minutes later, the pilot felt the engine roughness return, and he performed a precautionary power-on landing to the nearest airport. After an uneventful landing with the engine running, the pilot attempted to locate a maintenance facility, to no avail. With no mechanical assistance in sight, the pilot performed an engine runup to 1,700-rpm. The pilot reported that he began a takeoff from runway 08 and when the airplane reached mid-runway, again the engine roughness returned, and he aborted the takeoff.

After observing the windsock, he decided to takeoff from runway 26, and taxied to the departure end. He performed another engine run-up, which indicated normal operating parameters. During the initial takeoff, with the airplane about 300ft above ground level, the pilot heard a change in engine noise, and he could not maintain the initial climb. The pilot reported the diminishing performance as a total loss of engine power and performed a forced landing to an available clearing. During the landing roll, the airplane encountered uneven terrain and the airplane nosed over coming to rest inverted.

During recovery of the airplane, several gallons of fuel were drained from both the left and right tanks.

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Cessna 
Registration: N878AH
Model/Series: TU206 G 
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Amateur Built: No
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None
Operator Designator Code:

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: VMC
Condition of Light: Day
Observation Facility, Elevation: PSP,476 ft msl
Observation Time: 12:50 Local
Distance from Accident Site: 33 Nautical Miles
Temperature/Dew Point: 29°C /-2°C
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: 4 knots / , 130°
Lowest Ceiling:
Visibility: 10 miles
Altimeter Setting: 3004 inches Hg 
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Departure Point: Twentynine Palms, CA
Destination: Palm Springs, CA (UDD)

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 None
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: 5 None 
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: 
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 6 None 
Latitude, Longitude: 34.134311,-115.95868 (est)

TWENTYNINE PALMS, California  — A private plane, a 1978 Cessna 206 Stationair, tail number N878AH, with six people on board crashed shortly after takeoff at about noon Saturday, November 21st, at the Twentynine Palms Airport.

David Bailey of Bailey’s Auto Repair, towed the plane, which flipped onto its roof after hitting the ground near Francis Road south of Twentynine Palms Highway and west of the airport.

Outside of some scratches, he said, there were no injuries because of the crash, he reported.

“The guy flew in from Salt Lake City,” Bailey said, adding that the party was on its way to La Quinta.

The pilot, he said, reported that the plane’s cylinder head gauge indicated it was cold but the pilot thought the gauge might have been malfunctioning so he tried a takeoff but was not able to get airborne.

“He barely cleared the fence going west,” Bailey said. “He couldn’t get enough altitude.. He put it down in the weeds.”

As far as he knew, Bailey said, the flying party found another way to continue its journey to La Quinta.

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