Saturday, July 04, 2020

Cessna 172M Skyhawk, N6929H: Fatal accident occurred July 03, 2020 in Alpine, Utah County, Utah

Additional Participating Entity:
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Salt Lake City, Utah

Aviation Accident Preliminary Report - National Transportation Safety Board: https://app.ntsb.gov/pdf

http://registry.faa.gov/N6929H


Location: Alpine, UT
Accident Number: WPR20LA203
Date & Time: 07/03/2020, 0722 MDT
Registration: N6929H
Aircraft: Cessna 172
Injuries: 4 Fatal
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal

On July 3, 2020, about 0722 mountain daylight time, a Cessna 172 airplane, N6929H, was destroyed when it was involved in an accident near Alpine, Utah. The pilot and three passengers sustained fatal injuries. The airplane was operated as a Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 personal flight.

Radar data revealed that the airplane departed at 0637 from South Valley Regional Airport (U42) Salt Lake City, Utah, on a southerly heading. A witness located near the accident site observed the airplane inside a box canyon executing a right bank turn, followed by a couple of left and right wing-tip oscillations before it entered a clockwise, corkscrew spin. The airplane made about 1 1/2 -2 rotations before it disappeared from the witness's line of sight. The airplane impacted terrain in a horizontal attitude with a little to no forward movement.

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make:Cessna 
Registration: N6929H
Model/Series:172 M 
Aircraft Category:Airplane 
Amateur Built: No
Operator:
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site:
Condition of Light:
Observation Facility, Elevation:  K36U, 5637 ft msl
Observation Time:
Distance from Accident Site: 11 Nautical Miles
Temperature/Dew Point:
Lowest Cloud Condition:
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction:
Lowest Ceiling:
Visibility:  
Altimeter Setting:
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Departure Point: Salt Lake City, UT (U42)
Destination: Salt Lake City, UT (U42)

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 2 Fatal
Aircraft Damage: Destroyed
Passenger Injuries: 2 Fatal
Aircraft Fire:None 
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion:None 
Total Injuries: 4 Fatal
Latitude, Longitude: 40.499167, -111.658056 (est)

Those who may have information that might be relevant to the National Transportation Safety Board investigation may contact them by email eyewitnessreport@ntsb.gov, and any friends and family who want to contact investigators about the accident should email assistance@ntsb.gov.




UTAH COUNTY, Utah (KUTV) — An American Fork man and his two children were hiking Box Elder Peak Friday morning when they saw the plane crash that killed four people.

Gregg Rawlings and his two teenage sons stopped for a water break and to take pictures when they looked up and saw the plane getting closer.

“It corkscrewed maybe one-and-a-half, two times and went below the tree level. And we’re like, 'what is going on?' I didn’t know if it was a stunt plane trying to do something, but just moments later we heard the impact,” said Rawlings.

Immediately after that, they hiked further up the peak to get cell phone service and called 911. Then they made their way closer to the crash to get the coordinates to first responders, and to see if they could help.

“That is someone’s family down there. We don’t know what happened; we don’t know what state they’re in. We need to go check it,” Rawlings recalled.

Rawlings and his sons found the plane in a green grassy area. They said there wasn’t any smoke or flames like they were expecting,

“We came upon the plane, calling out, seeing if there was any response to see if there was any type of survivors, if we could help with what first aid we know. We walked upon the wreckage closer, there was no responses, it was pretty evident that there was no survivors.”

They gave first responders pictures of the site, and the exact coordinates, as well as the details of what they saw leading up to the crash.

“When we hung up there, it was kind of a relief, knowing that we felt like we have done everything that we could,” said Rawlings.

He said the first responders coached him with how to help his boys deal with the traumatic experience.

“How to just make sure they’re OK, as we go into the future. Just making sure the trauma of what we saw and experienced doesn’t continue to affect them.”

He said he is happy they were there and able to help get first responders to the crash quickly, and not leave the family of those on board wondering what had happened. The cause of the crash is still being investigated.

Four people died in the crash: The pilot, Tyson Brummett, and three passengers; Alex Blackhurst Ruegner and his aunt and uncle, Doug and Elaine Blackhurst.

https://kjzz.com


SALT LAKE CITY — Four people are dead following the crash of a small plane Friday morning in American Fork Canyon. 

The crash occurred above the Granite Flat campground in the Box Elder Peak area, according to Utah County Sheriff’s Sgt. Spencer Cannon.

The Utah County Sheriff’s Office received a call about the crash just minutes before 8 a.m. They were told by a witness that he and his two sons were hiking when they saw the plane begin to turn then spiral down toward the earth, according to Cannon.

The witness, Gregg Rawlings, was on a hike with his two teenage sons in the area Friday morning when they saw the plane getting closer and closer to where they stood overlooking the canyon.

“Seconds later we heard this thud, and we knew it had wrecked and hit the bottom of the canyon. At that point we were all a bit in shock,” Rawlings said. “We knew we had to quickly help.”

Rawlings said they didn’t have service at the time so he and his sons hiked farther up the mountain until they were able to make contact with dispatch. Upon notifying dispatch about the crash, Rawlings said they made their way down to the wreckage.

“I said, ‘OK, that is someone’s family down there. We need to get down to that wreckage as quickly as we can. One, we need to see if by chance there are any survivors and what we can do to help. Two, we need to get the exact coordinates of that plane wreck,’” he said.

According to Rawlings, it was pretty evident from what they saw that there were no survivors in the crash. From there, he and his sons hiked back up the canyon to give dispatch the exact coordinates.

Teams arrived shortly after.

“We were in the right place at the right time to witness everything that went on, so I was just happy there was not hours and hours spent of people’s time trying to find the wreckage somewhere in the mountains,” he said.

Cannon identified the passengers as pilot Tyson Colby Brummett, 35, of Salt Lake City; Alex Blackhurst Ruegner, 35, of Riverton; Elaine W. Blackhurst, 60, and Douglas Robinson Blackhurst, 62, both of Riverton.

The group had left South Valley Regional Airport in West Jordan early Friday morning, according to Cannon.

Investigators from National Transportation Safety Board and Federal Aviation Administration will respond to the crash scene in hopes of determining what caused the crash.

https://www.deseret.com

Gregg Rawlings helps Utah County officials find a Cessna 172M Skyhawk crash near Box Elder Peak after he watched the plane go down on  July 3, 2020. He shared these photos with officials to help them locate the downed plane.








A helicopter prepares to land near Box Elder Peak above the Granite Flat Campground in American Fork Canyon where a Cessna 172M Skyhawk crashed late Friday morning.


A helicopter arrives to collect the remains of four people who were killed in a Cessna 172M Skyhawk crash in American Fork Canyon and transport their bodies to the medical examiner. 


A helicopter arrives to collect the remains of four people who were killed in a Cessna 172M Skyhawk crash in American Fork Canyon and transport their bodies to the medical examiner. 


A photo of treetops that may have been grazed by a Cessna 172M Skyhawk as it spiraled down in American Fork Canyon on July 3rd, 2020, killing all four people onboard.


A photo of treetops that may have been grazed by a Cessna 172M Skyhawk as it spiraled down in American Fork Canyon on July 3rd, 2020, killing all four people onboard. 

First responders assemble at a designated staging area in American Fork Canyon after reports of a Cessna 172M Skyhawk crash near Box Elder Peak on July 3rd, 2020. 

First responders assemble at a designated staging area in American Fork Canyon after reports of a Cessna 172M Skyhawk crash near Box Elder Peak on July 3rd, 2020. 


A trailhead marker near the designated staging area for law enforcement and first responders after a Cessna 172M Skyhawk carrying four people crashed in American Fork Canyon on July 3rd, 2020. 

Law enforcement vehicles assemble near the site of a Cessna 172M Skyhawk crash in American Fork Canyon on July 3rd, 2020.

Crews working in American Fork Canyon where a Cessna 172M Skyhawk crashed late Friday morning. 


Law enforcement vehicles assemble near the site of a Cessna 172M Skyhawk crash in American Fork Canyon on July 3rd, 2020. 


First responders assemble at a designated staging area in American Fork Canyon after reports of a Cessna 172M Skyhawk crash near Box Elder Peak on July 3rd, 2020. 

First responders assemble at a designated staging area in American Fork Canyon after reports of a Cessna 172M Skyhawk crash near Box Elder Peak on July 3rd, 2020.

First responders assemble at a designated staging area in American Fork Canyon after reports of a Cessna 172M Skyhawk crash near Box Elder Peak on July 3rd, 2020. 




First responders from the Lone Peak Fire District at the scene near where a Cessna 172M Skyhawk crashed in American Fork Canyon on July 3rd, 2020. 


UTAH COUNTY — Emergency crews responded to a fatal airplane crash in American Fork Canyon Friday morning.

According to the Utah County Sheriff's Office, the plane went down near Box Elder Peak, north of the city of Alpine, and the Granite Flat campground just before 8:00 AM between the Deer Creek and White Pines trails.

The victims on board the plane were the pilot, Tyson Colby Brummett, 35, of Salt Lake City; Alex Blackhurst Ruegner, 35, of Riverton; and Alex's aunt and uncle Elaine W. Blackhurst, 60, of Riverton and her husband, Douglas Robinson Blackhurst, 62, both of Riverton. They departed from the South Valley Regional Airport in West Jordan.

Brummett was a former professional baseball player who had played with major league teams such as the Philadelphia Phillies and the Toronto Blue Jays.

"We kind of looked at each other and realized that was someone’s family... we needed to do what we could," said Gregg Rawlings, who witnessed the crash while hiking with his two sons. "We took some landmarks of where we saw it go down and we started walking towards those landmarks."

Rawlings and his sons, after making note of where the plane went down, walked back up the trail to an area with cell reception and called 911. They then walked back down the trail, where they learned that all four people on board the aircraft had been killed.

All four bodies have been taken to the medical examiner’s office in Taylorsville.

The cause of the crash is still under investigation.

https://www.fox13now.com

Loss of Control in Flight: North American P-51D Mustang, N4132A; fatal accident occurred November 17, 2018 near Gillespie County Airport (T82), Fredericksburg, Texas

Vincent Losada

Cowden Ward Jr.


  
Witness Photos

Witness Statement on Approach to T82

The National Transportation Safety Board traveled to the scene of this accident.

Additional Participating Entities:

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; San Antonio, Texas
Appareo Systems; Fargo, North Dakota

Aviation Accident Final Report - National Transportation Safety Board: https://app.ntsb.gov/pdf


Investigation Docket - National Transportation Safety Board: https://dms.ntsb.gov/pubdms 

https://registry.faa.gov/N4132A


Location: Fredericksburg, TX
Accident Number: CEN19FA028
Date & Time: 11/17/2018, 1515 CST
Registration: N4132A
Aircraft: North American P51
Aircraft Damage: Destroyed
Defining Event: Loss of control in flight
Injuries: 2 Fatal
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal

Analysis

The commercial pilot was participating in a World War II educational reenactment program with a passenger onboard. The purpose of the flight was to perform 4 to 5 passes in front of an amphitheater where the reenactment was being conducted. Witnesses at the amphitheater stated that the airplane performed a low pass before entering a climb. The airplane then entered a turn followed by a steep descent from which it did not recover before disappearing from view behind trees. Although the pilot held an authorization to fly the accident airplane at the time of the accident, he had a history of failed check rides, airspace violations, and enforcement actions. In each instance, the pilot's certificate was issued or reinstated upon reexamination.

The airplane impacted the ground in a near-vertical attitude. The propeller blades exhibited abrasions and leading-edge gouges consistent with the engine producing power at impact. All observed flight control separations exhibited features consistent with overload. No preimpact anomalies with the engine or airframe were found. Toxicology testing detected ethanol in specimens from the pilot consistent with postmortem production. Although the pilot had a history of coronary artery disease, there was no evidence that this condition contributed to the accident.

The accident pilot ran a charity that provided flights in his warbird airplane to veterans; he typically participated in the reenactment program with a veteran seated in the rear seat of his airplane. The director of the educational program stated that, in a pre-performance briefing on the day of the accident, the pilot was reminded of "all pertinent [Federal Aviation Administration] requirements," including that the fly-by be conducted no lower than 1,000 ft above ground level.

Given the available information, the pilot most likely performed a low-level maneuver with a passenger on board and was unable to recover from that maneuver before impacting terrain.

Probable Cause and Findings

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be:
The pilot's decision to perform a low-level maneuver at an altitude where he was unable to recover the airplane before impacting terrain.

Findings

Personnel issues
Aircraft control - Pilot (Cause)
Decision making/judgment - Pilot (Cause)

Factual Information

History of Flight

Maneuvering-aerobatics
Loss of control in flight (Defining event)

Uncontrolled descent
Collision with terr/obj (non-CFIT) 

On November 17, 2018, about 1515 central standard time, a North American P-51D airplane, N4132A, was destroyed when it impacted an apartment parking lot while maneuvering near Fredericksburg, Texas. The commercial pilot and passenger sustained fatal injuries. The airplane was registered to Pea Hochso LLC and was operated by the pilot as a Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 personal flight. Day visual meteorological conditions prevailed in the area about the time of the accident, and no flight plan was filed for the local flight, which originated about 1459 from Gillespie County Airport (T82), Fredericksburg, Texas.

The purpose of the flight was to perform a fly-over of a World War II educational presentation and reenactment. One witness reported that the airplane made a low-level pass and climbed out. As the airplane entered a right bank, it started to "drop." Trees blocked the witness's view and he "waited for the aircraft to climb out of the dive"; however, the airplane did not reappear from behind the trees.

Another witness reported that, following a "very low" pass, the airplane entered a climb, then "all of a sudden he did a roll." The airplane made a slight turn, then entered a vertical nose-down attitude and disappeared from view. 

Pilot Information

Certificate: Commercial
Age: 73, Male
Airplane Rating(s): Multi-engine Land; Single-engine Land
Seat Occupied: Front
Other Aircraft Rating(s): None
Restraint Used:
Instrument Rating(s): Airplane
Second Pilot Present: No
Instructor Rating(s): None
Toxicology Performed: Yes
Medical Certification: Class 2 With Waivers/Limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: 12/05/2017
Occupational Pilot:No
Last Flight Review or Equivalent: 07/17/2018
Flight Time: (Estimated) 4000 hours (Total, all aircraft) 

The 73-year-old pilot held a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) commercial pilot certificate with ratings for airplane single- and multiengine land and instrument airplane. He also held an authorization to operate the P-51.

On December 5, 2017, the pilot was issued a special issuance second-class FAA airman medical certificate, with the following limitation(s): "Must wear corrective lenses. Limited Second Class/full Third-Class privileges. Not valid for carrying passengers or cargo for compensation except if serving as pilot of fully qualified 2-pilot crew. Not valid for any class after 12/31/2018." The pilot reported on the application for that medical certificate that he had accumulated 4,000 total hours of flight experience with 60 hours in the previous 6 months.

A review of his FAA airman certification information revealed practical test failures, a certificate suspension for violation of airspace, and a pilot deviation in July 2014, during which the pilot failed to comply with air traffic control instructions. The pilot completed reexamination flights to include one in February 2015. A summary of details from that review is appended to the docket material associated with this investigation.

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: North American
Registration: N4132A
Model/Series: P51 D
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture:1944
Amateur Built: No
Airworthiness Certificate: Limited
Serial Number:122-40985
Landing Gear Type: Retractable - Tailwheel
Seats:2
Date/Type of Last Inspection: 03/08/2018, Annual
Certified Max Gross Wt.:
Time Since Last Inspection:
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 1812.9 Hours as of last inspection
Engine Manufacturer: Rolls Royce
ELT: 
Engine Model/Series: V-1650-7
Registered Owner: Pea Hochso Llc
Rated Power:
Operator: On file
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None

The accident airplane, serial number 122-40985, was an all-metal, laminar flow, low-wing monoplane. The airplane was powered by a twelve-cylinder, overhead cam, liquid-cooled, V-type, supercharged, Rolls Royce V-1650-7 engine, serial number V-331281. According to copies of logbook entries, an annual inspection was completed on March 8, 2018. As of that inspection, the airplane had accumulated 1,812.9 hours of total time. 

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: Visual Conditions
Condition of Light: Day
Observation Facility, Elevation: KT82, 1695 ft msl
Distance from Accident Site: 2 Nautical Miles
Observation Time: 1515 CST
Direction from Accident Site: 195°
Lowest Cloud Condition:
Visibility:  10 Miles
Lowest Ceiling: Broken / 3900 ft agl
Visibility (RVR):
Wind Speed/Gusts: 11 knots /
Turbulence Type Forecast/Actual:
Wind Direction: 190°
Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual:
Altimeter Setting: 30.04 inches Hg
Temperature/Dew Point: 20°C / 10°C
Precipitation and Obscuration: No Obscuration; No Precipitation
Departure Point: Fredericksburg, TX (T82)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Destination: Fredericksburg, TX (T82)
Type of Clearance: None
Departure Time: 1459 CST
Type of Airspace:

At 1515, the recorded weather at T82, about 2.5 miles from the accident site, included wind from 190° at 11 knots; 10 statute miles visibility; broken clouds at 3,900 ft above ground level; temperature 20°C; dew point 10°C; altimeter 30.04 inches of mercury. 

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Fatal
Aircraft Damage: Destroyed
Passenger Injuries: 1 Fatal
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 2 Fatal
Latitude, Longitude: 30.275278, -98.900000 (est)

The airplane wreckage came to rest in a parking lot northeast of T82. Linear witness marks were found on the ground under the leading edges of the wings. The leading edges of both wings exhibited aft crushing. Red and green colored media consistent with glass was found near each wing's respective separated navigation light holder. The engine and propeller were found buried about 5 ft in the ground. The rear section of the engine separated from its front section. The engine's compressor blades were intact. Three of the four propeller blades separated from the propeller hub and exhibited chordwise abrasion and nearby pavement exhibited a witness mark consistent with a propeller strike. One of these separated propeller blades exhibited leading edge gouges. The propeller blade that remained attached to the hub could not be rotated by hand. The empennage was separated from the fuselage forward of the tailwheel. The empennage came to rest inverted on parked cars about 68 ft and 310° from the engine. The fuselage and cockpit were fragmented in a debris path between the engine and empennage. Flight and engine control continuity could not be established due to impact damage; however, all observed separations exhibited features consistent with overload. The magneto switch was fragmented; its face plate indicated that it was in the "both" position. The fuel valve was found in the debris path. Some of the fuel lines were separated from the valve body. The fuel bladders were found breached. No preimpact anomalies with the engine or airframe were found.

An Appareo Stratus unit was found damaged in the wreckage; it did not contain nonvolatile memory. A GoPro camera was found within the debris field. A micro secure data (SD) card was not present in the camera but was subsequently located during recovery of the wreckage. The card was damaged and no data could be retrieved.

Medical And Pathological Information

An autopsy of the pilot was performed by Central Texas Autopsy, PLLC, Lockhart, Texas. The autopsy indicated that the pilot's cause of death was multiple traumatic injuries and the manner of death was accident.

Toxicology testing performed at the FAA Forensic Sciences Laboratory identified 15 mg/dL ethanol in arm muscle and none in thigh muscle. Ethanol is primarily a social drug with a powerful central nervous system depressant. After absorption, ethanol is quickly distributed throughout the body's tissues and fluids fairly uniformly. Ethanol may also be produced in the body after death. Given the toxicology findings, it is likely the ethanol was produce postmortem.

In 2002, the pilot reported having coronary artery disease to the FAA; he had a stent placed in his left anterior descending coronary artery and underwent angioplasty of the first diagonal. At the time of his last medical certificate exam, he reported having high blood pressure and using aspirin to prevent a heart attack, and atorvastatin and ezetimibe to control his cholesterol. These drugs are not considered impairing. The pilot had a cardiology evaluation, including a stress test that did not identify any ischemia, in September 2017. No significant abnormalities were identified on the physical exam.

Additional Information

According to a representative of the Admiral Nimitz Foundation, the accident pilot began flying in support of the foundation's Living History Program (LHP) in September 2017 and had participated in 9 of the 38 shows since that time. The program, which intended to educate the public about World War II, included a reenactment of a beach landing on a Pacific island. The purpose of the P-51 overflight was to "add the aviation element to the show to increase the educational value."

The representative stated that the accident pilot ran a charity that provided veterans with flights in his P-51. The pilot typically flew with a veteran in the rear seat when participating in the LHP demonstrations.


When discussing the flyover on the day of the accident, the pilot and the LHP director discussed "all pertinent FAA requirements, including the 1,000-ft minimum-safe altitude." The flyover flight path was in front of the amphitheater and over the performance area, normally west to east. The pilot would take off about 15 minutes before he was scheduled to make his first flyover. About 1 minute before the simulated island invasion, the LHP director would radio the pilot and give him the "ok" to make the first pass. The airplane normally made 4 to 5 passes during the reenactment.

Cowden Ward Jr. 


View of the accident site looking down from a balcony.

View of a separated section of a wing.

View of the right side of the inverted, separated empennage.

View of control cables forward of the empennage.

View of the engine embedded in terrain and a linear ground scar.

View of the engine embedded in terrain and a linear ground scar.

View of a separated main landing gear.

Close up view of the embedded engine.

View of a separated section of a wing spar.

View of a separated section of a wing spar with the embedded engine in the background.

View of impacted ground vehicles.

View of the separated empennage near impacted ground vehicles.

View of the separated flight control cables.

View of the recovered, separated propeller blades.

View of a ground scar near the location of a propeller blade.

View of the recovered engine and an attached propeller blade.

Side view of the recovered engine.
Front view of the recovered engine and an attached propeller blade.

View of the separated fuel selector valve.

Observers in Covered Amphitheater

Pilot Logbook

Maintenance Records

Maps/Charts of Accident Area