Friday, November 13, 2020

Van's RV-12, N975G: Accident occurred November 06, 2020 at Byron Airport (C83), Contra Costa 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; Alameda, California 

Location: Byron, CA
Accident Number: WPR21LA049
Date & Time: November 6, 2020, 11:58 Local
Registration: N975G
Aircraft: Vans RV-12 
Injuries: 2 None
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General aviation - Personal

On November 6, 2020, about 1158 Pacific standard time, a Vans RV-12 airplane, N975G was substantially damaged when it was involved in an accident near Byron, California. The pilot and passenger were uninjured. The airplane was operated as a Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 personal flight.

The pilot reported that soon after departing runway 23, at about 500 ft above ground level (agl), he experienced a loss of engine power. Due to rising terrain, he immediately initiated a left turn to return to the departure end of runway 23. Soon after landing on the runway, the pilot reported a gust of wind that lifted the right wing and the airplane subsequently departed the left side of the runway, striking a taxiway sign and coming to rest soon after.

The pilot reported that at the time of the accident the wind was at 230° at 18 knots gusting to 23 knots.

The airplane was relocated to a secured facility for further examination.

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Vans
Registration: N975G
Model/Series: RV-12
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Amateur Built: Yes
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: KLVK,393 ft msl 
Observation Time: 11:53 Local
Distance from Accident Site: 12 Nautical Miles 
Temperature/Dew Point: 17.8°C /5°C
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: 18 knots / 22 knots, 220°
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility: 10 miles
Altimeter Setting: 29.97 inches Hg
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Departure Point: Byron, CA
Destination: Byron, CA

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 None 
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: 1 None 
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: 
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 2 None
Latitude, Longitude: 37.823174,-121.62965 (est)

A pilot and its passenger escaped with minor injuries after a plane crash that occurred on November 6th at approximately 12:25 pm.

According to preliminary information, there was a report of an airplane crash at the Byron Airport with a plane on fire. However, after a pilot made an emergency landing, there was only smoke and no fire.

According to the county, the aircraft, which is based at the Byron Airport, had just departed Runway 23 and lost engine power. The pilot attempted to circle back and land in the opposite direction on Runway 5. However, due to high winds the aircraft veered off the runway and sustained damage to the landing gear. The pilot and passenger were not injured.

Airport Operations staff responded to the scene and also requested East County Fire and medical response to the accident. East County Fire was canceled once Airport Operations arrived on scene and determined they were not needed. However, medical responders continued to the scene to confirm the pilot and passenger were ok.

The active runway was closed for several hours waiting for FAA/NTSB clearance and the ultimate removal of the aircraft.


  1. directional control and braking are are issues landing with the wind ...
    "The pilot attempted to circle back and land in the opposite direction on Runway 5."

    1. If you're fortunate enough to have the altitude to return to the field after an engine failure on departure, you're going to land at the departure end of the runway you took off from.

      The wind was 250 at at 16 kt gusting 21 kt. The pilot did a good job, there were no injuries and the damage to the aircraft looks repairable from the one picture shown. He should be congratulated.