Thursday, December 03, 2020

Cessna 551 Citation II, N48DK: Accident occurred December 02, 2020 at Lufkin Angelina County Airport (KLFK), Burke, Texas

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; Houston, Texas

Aviation Star S II LLC

Location: Lufkin, TX 
Accident Number: CEN21LA071
Date & Time: December 2, 2020, 08:43 Local
Registration: N48DK
Aircraft: Cessna 551
Injuries: 1 Minor, 2 None
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General aviation - Business

On December 2, 2020, about 0843 central standard time, a Cessna 551, N48DK, was substantially damaged when it was involved in an accident near Lufkin, Texas. The airline transport pilot sustained minor injuries and 2 passengers were not injured. The airplane was being operated as a Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 91 corporate flight.

The pilot stated that after an uneventful Instrument Flight Rules (IFR) flight from Austin, Texas, he entered the RNAV 16 approach to runway 16 at the Angelina County Airport (LFK), Lufkin, Texas. His intention was a full stop landing. After breaking out of the clouds during the approach, he cancelled his flight plan and landed on runway 16 which was wet, and it was raining.

During the landing, the pilot cycled the anti-skid brake system about 2-3 times, and then the braking did not respond while the airplane slowed to about 20 knots. The pilot thought that the airplane’s anti-skid stopped working and the airplane may have hydroplaned. The airplane exited the runway onto wet grass, went through an airport perimeter fence, crossed a roadway, and came to rest in a cow pasture. The pilot and both passengers evacuated the airplane after coming to a stop.

On scene inspection of the airplane revealed that the nose and main landing gear collapsed after departing the runway, and both wings had structural damage to their respective spars.

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Cessna
Registration: N48DK
Model/Series: 551 
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Amateur Built: No
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None
Operator Designator Code:

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: IMC 
Condition of Light: Day
Observation Facility, Elevation: KLFK,316 ft msl 
Observation Time: 08:53 Local
Distance from Accident Site: 0 Nautical Miles
Temperature/Dew Point: 9°C /7°C
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: 6 knots / , 100°
Lowest Ceiling: Broken / 900 ft AGL 
Visibility: 6 miles
Altimeter Setting: 30.15 inches Hg 
Type of Flight Plan Filed: IFR
Departure Point: Austin, TX (AUS)
Destination: Lufkin, TX

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Minor 
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: 2 None
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries:
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 1 Minor, 2 None 
Latitude, Longitude: 31.234028,-94.75 (est)

AIRCRAFT:   1979 Cessna 551 N48DK, s/n: 551-0095

Total Time:  9,405 hours, Total Landings:  8,313

Phase inspections 5, 55, and 61 on May 27, 2020.  9,371 hours at inspection.        
ENGINES:  Engine log entries from 2016 to 2020 are not available and presumed lost by a previous owner.

#1 Engine - Pratt and Whitney JT15D-4, s/n: PCE 70114

Total Time:  11,724 hours; Total Cycles: 11,910

Data from last maintenance record on 12/3/20.                                           
                                                                                                                        #2 Engine - Pratt and Whitney JT15D-4, s/n:  PCE 71658

Total Time: 5,584 hours; Total Cycles:  5,626 Data from last maintenance record on 12/3/20.                          

EQUIPMENT:  Garmin GNS 530, Garmin GTX 330, Garmin GMX 200, Garmin GNS 430, Sandel ST3400

DESCRIPTION OF ACCIDENT:  The aircraft was damaged when it ran off the end of the runway in rainy weather and became entangled in fencing and barb wire.

DESCRIPTION OF DAMAGES:  The aircraft was disassembled for recovery.  The damage includes but may not be limited to the following:   

All three landing gear were sheared off from their mounts.

Both wings and their trailing edge flaps sustained damage from impact with the ground and the departure of the landing gear from the aircraft.

Both wings sustained damage to the leading edges likely from impact with the fence posts that were struck.

Both engines showed signs of ingestion of small grass and mud and other debris.

The left engine mounts were damaged allowing to engine to hang lower than normal.

The underside of the fuselage was badly impacted, and the pressure vessel is likely compromised.

The upper surface of the fuselage and both windshields were scratched by the wire fence and barbed wire.

LOCATION OF AIRCRAFT:   Aircraft is stored Air Salvage of Dallas, 1361 Ferris Rd , Lancaster, TX 75146

WARRANTY:  There is no warranty, express or implied for the information provided herein or the condition, useability, workability, operability or marketability of the aircraft salvage.  All times are approximate and the logbooks and aircraft should be inspected by each bidder BEFORE BIDDING.  Failure of the bidder to view the salvage or wreckage, or confirm any information provided is NOT grounds for a claim or withdrawal of bid after bid closing date.)   

HOURS estimated from logbooks or other information - not guaranteed or warranted

REMARKS:   *Engine log entries from 2016 to 2020 are not available and presumed lost by a previous owner.

(All airframe log entries are believed to be intact.)

*The aircraft was disassembled for recoveryThe aircraft was disassembled for recovery

*Insurer reserves the right to reject any and all bids. 

*Salvage is as is/where is. 

*The posting information is the best to our knowledge. 

*An inspection of the salvage is highly recommended. 


Read more here:

Video by Farr Electrical Services

A Cessna Citation 551 II crashed at the Angelina County Airport around 9 a.m. Wednesday while landing.

Airport manager Gary Letney said no major injuries occurred during the crash. 

The aircraft anti-lock braking system did not operate properly while landing and they were not able to slow down before they got to the end of the runway, according to assistant manager Claude Riddle.

"I've been here 32 years, so I've seen a few (crashes)," Riddle said. "They are very seldom, and so far everybody I've seen involved in one has survived without any major injuries."

The jet ran off the runway, and its wheels snapped off, the antenna was damaged and bottom was severely scratched, Riddle said. It is unclear if the jet is totaled at this time, but they can do some pretty miraculous things to fix aircraft these days, he said.

Electrical contractor Chris Farr was at the airport working on a project nearby when he decided to take a video of a jet landing in the rain.

"I saw the jet's landing lights, and I just thought it would make for a cool video watching it land during the rain," Farr said. "I started filming it, and when it got toward the end of the runway and it wasn't slowing down much, it all happened quick, and I couldn't believe what I was watching. It ran off the end of the runway there and crashed into the field. Thank God everybody was OK."

When he saw the jet leave the end of the runway, Farr said his heart sank. He managed to catch the crash on video as the jet went by just feet in front of his vehicle.

"It's not everyday you witness something like that or even hear about something like that and then to see it that close," he said.

"I just wanted to shoot a quick video, and it just so happened to be the right place, right time for it."

He said he has taken a few flying lessons at the airport, and he thinks the pilot handled the mechanical failure the best way possible.

"The pilot was pretty hard on himself," Farr said. "I told him this was the best outcome for a crash, for sure. His passengers walked away from it without a scratch, and he had very, very, very minor injuries, so it was a blessing."

ANGELINA COUNTY, Texas (KTRE) - Nobody was seriously injured in a plane crash involving the next speaker of the Texas House, Dade Phelan at the Angelina County Airport.

According to airport Manager Gary Letney, the plane was landing when the brakes went out. It then crashed at the end of the runway.

“In talking to the pilot, he said that when he landed the anti-lock brakes failed on the jet and so he cut them off and cut them back on, and when he did he had no brakes at all.”

The pilot suffered minor injuries, but was walking around the crash site this afternoon. Two other passengers were on the plane. The office of State Representative Trent Ashby confirmed that Representative Dade Phelan was on the plane, on the way to meet with Ashby.

“Several of the volunteer fire departments came out and went down there to the plane in case of a fire. Then DPS came, and we called the Houston center.”

The airport had a breakaway at the end of the runway which Letney says is designed to keep planes from flipping over if they do run off the runway.

“It breaks off pretty easy, which it did, it broke off. But then the neighbors on the other side of the fence, it was a hog wire fence, and it actually caught that plane, kind of in mid air, and kept it from really running a long way.”

The National Transportation Safety Board arrived this afternoon to begin the investigation. Letney guesses the plane is totaled.

“The wings weren’t in the right position, it broke off all the landing gears, there was some underneath stuff that it pulled off that’s down there. So it’s pretty big damage.”

The office of State Rep. Trent Ashby (R-Lufkin) confirmed Phelan was on the plane on the way to meet with Ashby.

Ashby’s office released the following statement: “Everyone on the plane is safe and we’re grateful to that.”

The Cessna 551 Citation II is registered out of Baytown. According to, the plane came from Austin and was scheduled to land in Lufkin at 8:42 a.m. It was then scheduled to leave Lufkin at 12:19 p.m. and land in Tyler at 12:38 p.m.


  1. runway 7 would have been a better choice in those conditions.....

  2. Woops, cycling the anti-skid system on rollout is not a valid strategy. If the braking system fails, especially on a wet runway, the emergency brake should be used as per the handbook.

  3. Look close at N48DK's engine outlet (1:03 in the video). The aircraft does not have thrust reversing capability. (No fishmouth clamshells, no mechanism stingers for clamshell deployment).

    Operating into KLFK's 4,311' length runway 16 in the rain without thrust reversing capability gets sporty when relying on brakes alone doesn't work out.

    Example Citation thrust reversers:

    1. Looks like this Citation (CE-551) has had the Williams Engines modification (from the original Pratts), similar to what comes standard on the Citation Jet (CE-525 series). The Williams are great engines, but offer no thrust reverser option that I know of. Not trying to second guess the pilot, but in this incident, if he tried to brake immediately upon touchdown, the wheels may have locked and thus never spun up enough to activate the anti lock system. Just a thought. So glad no one was seriously injured.

    2. For comparison, The Honda jet also has no reverse thrusters. They advised that minimum 5000’ in the rain for a low time new owner. If runway is not grooved, you need to be right on the minimum numbers during approach and touchdown. This is with Honda’s state of art ABS braking system. There have been a few over runs in the Honda which reversers may have prevented.

    3. The engine type on this aircraft is PW JT15D-4

  4. "The jet ran off the runway, and its wheels snapped off, the antenna was damaged and bottom was severely scratched, Riddle said. It is unclear if the jet is totaled at this time, but they can do some pretty miraculous things to fix aircraft these days, he said."

    It all depends on repair cost vs. aircraft value. That man should know that. Based on wing damage, it's a 50/50 chance of being a write-off. And that's just if there is no structural damage. This is a 1978 model Citation II and is not worth much. There's a good condition 1982 9K hour version for sale for $375k on Trade-A-Plane (and it has upgraded avionics and thrust reversers). My bet is that this bird is market valued much less that that and will be an insurance write off.

  5. That woven-wire fence did a good job of slowing the forward movement.
    I agree, a write-off but some good parts value.

  6. It's flying:

    1. better look again. last flight shown is the accident flight

  7. In the rare event of brake system failure, operators
    must immediately use the emergency braking system to stop the airplane in all Citation models.
    Models 550/551 (Citation II and Citation II Classic)
    Pilot builds pressure to the antiskid servo valve by pressing the brake pedals and activating the hydraulic master cylinders
    The antiskid servo valve has two shuttle valves that allow hydraulic fluid to bypass through the servo valve to the brakes without electrical power
    If there is no electrical power to the brake system, the hydraulic braking pressure can still be increased by pumping the pedals

    1. Can you mount snow skis on these for pasture landing? Simpler than anti slide or reversers. Reversers not good if only one deploy.

  8. Observations near time of accident:

    SA 02/12/2020 15:53-METAR KLFK 021553Z AUTO 13003KT 5SM RA BR SCT050 BKN060 OVC070 09/08 A3016 RMK AO2 SLP213 P0005 T00940078=

    SA 02/12/2020 14:53-METAR KLFK 021453Z AUTO 10006KT 6SM -RA BR BKN065 OVC080 09/07 A3015 RMK AO2 SLP208 P0009 60009 T00890067 53013=

  9. In my experience very few part 91 jet pilots understand landing performance and have reasonable SOP's that they live by. I've asked many jet pilots "what percent safety margin do you use when determining landing performance?" I usually get a blank stare, then some non standard explanation of what they would do in a given situation. I'm guessing the that above jet had very little safety margin even if the brakes were good.

  10. Short, wet runway, no reversers, aging Citation, Part 91 operation. Quite the combination for disaster, just ask Dale Earnhardt Jr. and his wife.

    These Part 91 guys get themselves an aging jet and a minimal amount of mediocre training and they thing they're quite the pro - when in reality their egos are writing checks their skill sets can't cash.

    I politely listened to a Part 91 corporate guy tell me how airline pilots don't know anything about "really flying a jet". I then asked him if he knew how many fatalities there had been in Part 121 jet operations in the last 12 months, how many hours or passengers were flown Part 121 in that same period, and if he could give me the numbers for those same parameters for Part 91 corporate jet operations. He promptly changed the subject.

    There is no comparison to data driven performance numbers that include a safety margin and that are generated and executed by a well trained crew and dispatcher. But what do I know?

    1. Very well addressed. Would like to meet the SW Pilot that landed at BRANSON.

  11. Another Part 91 guy (or guys) who didn't look at the performance book, didn't contemplate the wet runway, didn't consider the lack of reversers, didn't see any value in selecting a longer runway, and subsequently ran a perfectly good airplane off the end of a runway.

    Thanks to him and his cadre, all of our insurance rates just went up a little.

  12. using the road he crossed, it appears PIC landed on Runway 16/34, Dimensions: 4311 x 100 ft. / 1314 x 30 m 296 FT PAVED STOPWAY NW END
    instead of
    Runway 7/25 Dimensions: 5400 x 100 ft. / 1646 x 30 m Surface: asphalt, in good condition,-94.7454885,516m/data=!3m1!1e3

    1. Of course we were not there, but I'm sure he would have loved to have that extra 1000ft.

    2. as noted, his choice of rwy with these conditions.
      "14:53-METAR KLFK 021453Z AUTO 10006KT 6SM"

    3. There’s also no taxiway at the end of 15 , which adds on an inconvenience factor to have to make a 180 at the end and backtaxi . 100’ width is plenty but Does that Citation have a good turn radius?

    4. That is an extra 200 ft on the end of 16 that is not counted in the published total. The end of the runway is wherre the taxiway connects.

  13. All very interesting, but let's get to the meat:
    Were the pax wearing masks?
    Why was the flight necessary? The GOV tells us to use on-line meetings - so why was an in person meeting required between legislators?
    /sarcasm off

    Corporate flight ... begs the questions 'who is paying' and 'for what purpose'


  14. That's a lot to happen after he'd slowed to 20 knots. Still a little thrust coming out if there are no reversers. Is shutting them down ever an option?

  15. From Simuflite Citation II Operating Handbook

    Page F-14 Part 91 Landing Field Length
    Zero wind and zero runway gradient
    No thrust reverser's

    Sea level and +10° C

    10,000 lb. aircraft – 2000’ runway
    12,000 lb. aircraft – 2190’ runway

    Recommended Correction Factors
    Runway Depth of Multiply Landing
    Condition Precipitation field Length by:
    Wet Less than 0.01” of Water 1.45
    Water Less than 0.4” of water 2.05

    NOTE: (2) If tailwind landing cannot be avoided, add 20% to the Landing Field Length FACTOR. DO Not Land on precipitation-covered runways with any tailwind component.

    Tailwind Landing on Dry runway 2000’ x 20% = 2400’
    2190’ x 20% = 2708’

    Wet Runway:
    2000’ x 1.45 = 2900’ w/tailwind 2900’ + 20% = 3480’
    2190’ x 1.45 = 3176’ w/tailwind 3176’ + 20% = 3811’

    Water on runway:
    2000’ x 2.05 = 4100’ w/tailwind 4100’ + 20% = 4920’
    2190’ x 2.05 = 4490’ w/tailwind 4490’ + 20% = 5388’

    NOTE: (4) Anti-Skid Inoperative – Increase landing field length by 60 percent.

  16. In the air, speed is life. On the ground, speed is a big problem. On a very short runway, a very BIG problem. I'm guessing this was his last flight


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