Sunday, March 28, 2021

Controlled Flight into Terrain: Rans S-6ES Coyote II, N265GB; accident occurred April 02, 2019 in Lafe, Greene County, Arkansas

Aviation Accident Final Report - National Transportation Safety Board

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

Additional Participating Entity:
Federal Aviation Administration Flight Standards District Office; Little Rock, Arkansas

Investigation Docket - National Transportation Safety Board:

Location: Lafe, AR
Accident Number: CEN19LA116
Date & Time: 04/02/2019, 1732 CDT
Registration: N265GB
Aircraft: BERKEY S-6ES
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Controlled flight into terr/obj (CFIT)
Injuries: 1 None
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal 


The noncertificated pilot reported that, while on approach for landing at the private turf runway, he was "blinded by the sun" and allowed the airplane to descend too low. The tailwheel hit vines growing near the runway, and the left wing subsequently impacted the ground, resulting in substantial damage. The pilot reported that there were no mechanical failures or malfunctions of the airplane and added that the accident may have been prevented by landing at a different time or by clearing the vegetation around the runway.

Probable Cause and Findings

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be:
The non-certificated pilot's failure to maintain an appropriate glidepath while landing toward the sun, which resulted in impact with vegetation and a subsequent loss of control.


Aircraft Descent/approach/glide path - Not attained/maintained
Personnel issues Aircraft control - Pilot
Environmental issues Glare - Contributed to outcome
Personnel issues Qualification/certification - Pilot

Factual Information

On April 2, 2019, about 1732 central daylight time, an experimental, amateur-built Berkey S-6ES airplane, impacted vegetation on final approach at a private turf airstrip near Lafe, Arkansas. The pilot was not injured and the airplane was substantially damaged. The airplane was registered to and operated by the pilot as a Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 personal flight. Day visual meteorological conditions prevailed for the flight, which was not operated on a flight plan. The flight originated from the Blytheville Municipal Airport (HKA), Blytheville, Arkansas, about 1700. The private airstrip was the intended destination.

The pilot reported that he was relocating the airplane from HKA to be based at the private airstrip which was closer to his home. He made one low pass over the field before returning to land. On final approach, he was "blinded by [the] sun" and the tailwheel hit vines growing near the airstrip which caused the airplane to stall. The left wing struck the ground resulting the substantial damage. In addition, the left main landing gear and propeller were damaged during the hard landing. The pilot noted that there were no mechanical failures or malfunctions associated with the airplane. He added that the accident might have been prevented by either landing at a later time so that the sun would not have "blinded" him or by clearing the vegetation near the runway to ground level.

Information received from the Federal Aviation Administration indicated that the pilot did not hold a current pilot or medical certificate at the time of the accident. The pilot was initially issued a combined third-class medical and student pilot certificate in August 1994 by an aviation medical examiner. However, upon further review by the FAA, additional information unrelated to any medical deficiency was requested from the pilot. When the requested information was not received, the pilot was determined to be ineligible for a medical certificate and the application was denied. No other medical or pilot certificate applications were on file.

The airplane was issued an experimental airworthiness certificate and met the requirements for operation as a light sport airplane. Regulations required pilot and medical certification in order to operate the airplane. Specifically, any individual operating a light sport airplane must hold a sport pilot or higher level of certification, or a current student pilot certificate with the applicable endorsements. In addition, a light sport airplane may be operated based on a valid driver's license provided the pilot was determined to be eligible for a medical certificate at the time of his/her most recent application, and not had his/her most recently issued medical certificate suspended or revoked. Because the pilot did not hold a current pilot certificate, nor did he meet the medical certification requirements, he was not legally authorized to act as pilot-in-command of the airplane at the time of the accident.

History of Flight

Approach-VFR pattern final Controlled flight into terr/obj (CFIT) (Defining event)
Uncontrolled descent Collision with terr/obj (non-CFIT)

Pilot Information

Certificate: None
Age: 61, Male
Airplane Rating(s): None
Seat Occupied:Left 
Other Aircraft Rating(s): None
Restraint Used: 3-point
Instrument Rating(s): None
Second Pilot Present: No
Instructor Rating(s): None
Toxicology Performed: No
Medical Certification: None None
Last FAA Medical Exam: 
Occupational Pilot: No
Last Flight Review or Equivalent:
Flight Time:  82 hours (Total, all aircraft), 82 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft), 1 hours (Last 90 days, all aircraft), 0.5 hours (Last 30 days, all aircraft), 0 hours (Last 24 hours, all aircraft)

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: BERKEY
Registration: N265GB
Model/Series: S-6ES
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 1999
Amateur Built: Yes
Airworthiness Certificate: Experimental
Serial Number: 04991312
Landing Gear Type: Tailwheel
Seats: 2
Date/Type of Last Inspection: 10/02/2013, Condition
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 1320 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection:
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 5224 Hours as of last inspection
Engine Manufacturer: Rotax
ELT: C91A installed, not activated
Engine Model/Series: 912
Registered Owner: On file
Rated Power: 80 hp
Operator: On file
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: Visual Conditions
Condition of Light: Day
Observation Facility, Elevation: 4M9, 293 ft msl
Distance from Accident Site: 13 Nautical Miles
Observation Time: 1715 CDT
Direction from Accident Site: 337°
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Visibility:  10 Miles
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility (RVR):
Wind Speed/Gusts: 14 knots /
Turbulence Type Forecast/Actual: /
Wind Direction: 200°
Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual: /
Altimeter Setting: 30.09 inches Hg
Temperature/Dew Point: 20°C / 3°C
Precipitation and Obscuration: No Obscuration; No Precipitation
Departure Point: Blytheville, AR (HKA)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Destination: Lafe, AR (PVT)
Type of Clearance: None
Departure Time: 1700 CDT
Type of Airspace: Class G

Airport Information

Airport: Private (PVT)
Runway Surface Type: Grass/turf
Airport Elevation: 340 ft
Runway Surface Condition: Dry; Rough
Runway Used: 27
IFR Approach: None
Runway Length/Width: 1200 ft / 40 ft
VFR Approach/Landing: Full Stop; Traffic Pattern 

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 None
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 1 None
Latitude, Longitude: 36.204444, -90.548889

No comments:

Post a Comment