Saturday, March 20, 2021

Piper PA-16, N676SC: Accident occurred March 31, 2019 at Afton Municipal Airport (KAFO), Lincoln County, Wyoming

Aviation Accident Final Report - National Transportation Safety Board 

Additional Participating Entity:
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Denver, Colorado

Investigation Docket - National Transportation Safety Board:

Location: Afton, WY
Accident Number: GAA19CA184
Date & Time: 03/31/2019, 1130 MDT
Registration: N676SC
Aircraft: Piper PA 16
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Miscellaneous/other
Injuries: 2 None
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal 


The pilot of the tailwheel-equipped airplane reported that, upon landing, the airplane bounced twice and started to veer left. He immediately applied power to go around, but the main landing gear struck a snowbank, and the airplane nosed over.

The airplane sustained substantial damage to the left and right wings.

The pilot reported that there were no preimpact mechanical failures or malfunctions with the airplane that would have precluded normal operation.

Probable Cause and Findings

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be:
The pilot's improper landing flare, which resulted in a bounced landing and loss of directional control and the airplane's subsequent impact with a snowbank and nose-over during an attempted go-around.


Aircraft Directional control - Not attained/maintained
Aircraft Landing flare - Not attained/maintained
Personnel issues Use of equip/system - Pilot
Environmental issues Snow/ice - Effect on operation

Factual Information

History of Flight

Landing-aborted after touchdown Abnormal runway contact
Landing-aborted after touchdown Loss of control on ground
Landing-aborted after touchdown Attempted remediation/recovery
Landing-aborted after touchdown Collision with terr/obj (non-CFIT)
Landing-aborted after touchdown Nose over/nose down

Pilot Information

Certificate: Commercial
Age: 71, Male
Airplane Rating(s): Single-engine Land
Seat Occupied: Left
Other Aircraft Rating(s): None
Restraint Used: 4-point
Instrument Rating(s): None
Second Pilot Present: No
Instructor Rating(s): None
Toxicology Performed: No
Medical Certification: Class 3 With Waivers/Limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: 05/01/2018
Occupational Pilot: No
Last Flight Review or Equivalent: 06/13/2018
Flight Time:  (Estimated) 2293 hours (Total, all aircraft), 34 hours (Total, this make and model), 2094 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft), 2 hours (Last 90 days, all aircraft), 1 hours (Last 30 days, all aircraft)

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Piper
Registration: N676SC
Model/Series: PA 16 No Series
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 1949
Amateur Built: No
Airworthiness Certificate: Normal
Serial Number: 16-676
Landing Gear Type: Tailwheel
Seats: 4
Date/Type of Last Inspection: 05/22/2018, Annual
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 1650 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection:
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 2405 Hours at time of accident
Engine Manufacturer: Lycoming
ELT: C91  installed, not activated
Engine Model/Series: O-360-A2B
Registered Owner: On file
Rated Power: 150 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: KAFO, 6221 ft msl
Distance from Accident Site: 0 Nautical Miles
Observation Time: 1735 UTC
Direction from Accident Site: 4°
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Visibility:  10 Miles
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility (RVR):
Wind Speed/Gusts: Calm /
Turbulence Type Forecast/Actual: None / None
Wind Direction:
Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual: N/A / N/A
Altimeter Setting: 30.28 inches Hg
Temperature/Dew Point: -1°C / -7°C
Precipitation and Obscuration: No Obscuration; No Precipitation
Departure Point: Afton, WY (AFO)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Destination: Afton, WY (AFO)
Type of Clearance: None
Departure Time: 1045 MDT
Type of Airspace: Class G

Airport Information

Airport: Afton Muni (AFO)
Runway Surface Type: Asphalt
Airport Elevation: 6220 ft
Runway Surface Condition: Dry
Runway Used: 34
IFR Approach: None
Runway Length/Width: 7025 ft / 75 ft
VFR Approach/Landing: Traffic Pattern

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 None
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: 1 None
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 2 None
Latitude, Longitude: 42.708889, -110.942222 (est)


  1. Another nice tail dragger wrecked by someone who doesn't know how to fly them.

  2. If he would have initiated a go-around instead of instituted a go-around perhaps he would not have screwed it up


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