Wednesday, July 07, 2021

Cessna 172S Skyhawk, N2102P: Incident occurred July 03, 2021 and Accident occurred January 06, 2015

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Scottsdale, Arizona

July 03, 2021:  Aircraft landed hard and incurred a propeller strike. 

Westwind School of Aeronautics Phoenix LLC

Date: 03-JUL-21
Time: 16:00:00Z
Regis#: N2102P
Aircraft Make: CESSNA
Aircraft Model: 172
Event Type: INCIDENT
Highest Injury: NONE
Aircraft Missing: No
Activity: PERSONAL
Flight Phase: LANDING (LDG)
Operation: 91

January 06, 2015

Aviation Accident Final Report - National Transportation Safety Board

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

Additional Participating Entity:
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Richmond, Virginia 

Investigation Docket - National Transportation Safety Board:

Location: Norfolk, Virginia 
Accident Number: ERA15LA094
Date & Time: January 6, 2015, 13:30 Local
Registration: N2102P
Aircraft: Cessna 172 
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Loss of engine power (partial)
Injuries: 2 None
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General aviation - Instructional


The designated pilot examiner (DPE) and student pilot were conducting a private pilot check ride. The DPE reported that, during climbout, he retarded the throttle to simulate an engine failure. The student attempted to recover the airplane by lowering its nose to maintain controlled flight. However, the airplane descended. The DPE terminated the simulated engine failure, took control of the airplane, and attempted to recover full engine power, but the engine remained at idle power, and the airplane descended into trees. A postaccident examination of the airframe and engine revealed no mechanical malfunctions or failures, and the engine was test run with no anomalies noted. The reason for the engine's failure to regain full power could not be determined.

Probable Cause and Findings

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be:
The engine's failure to regain full power after a simulated engine failure for reasons that could not be determined during postaccident examinations and testing.


Not determined (general) - Unknown/Not determined
Environmental issues Tree(s) - Contributed to outcome

Factual Information

On January 6, 2015, about 1330 eastern standard time, a Cessna 172S, N2102P, was substantially damaged when it collided with trees during a forced landing near Norfolk, Virginia. The designated pilot examiner (DPE) and student pilot were not injured. The airplane was registered to Broad Reach Corporation and operated by Eads Flight School under the provisions of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and no flight plan was filed for the instructional flight. The flight originated from Hampton Roads Executive Airport (PVG), Norfolk, Virginia about 1300.

According to the DPE and the student pilot, during a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) private pilot check ride, the DPE retarded the throttle during climbout at an altitude of 500 feet above ground level to simulate an engine failure. He then asked the student pilot "what he would do to recover the airplane." The student pilot lowered the nose of the airplane and maintained controlled flight. As the airplane descended, the DPE asked the student pilot to turn the fuel boost pump to the "ON" position and recover the airplane. The student pilot acknowledged but did not activate the boost pump and the airplane continued to descend. The DPE terminated the simulated engine failure, took over control of the airplane and pushed the throttle forward to regain engine power. However, the engine did not respond and remained at idle rpm. The DPE verified the magneto selector was in the both position, mixture in the rich position, and asked the student pilot to verify the fuel tank selector valve was in the on/both position. The airplane continued to descend and collided with a tree line. During the collision both wings were buckled and the airplane came to rest at the base of a tree.

An examination of the engine by a FAA inspector revealed that the propeller was bent but the exterior of the engine appeared to have minor damage. The two aft right engine mount tubes were buckled aft and broken. The engine turned over by hand and compression on all four cylinders was achieved. All eight spark plugs were removed, and with the exception of the No. 2 bottom plug being oil fouled, all other plugs were mild tan to a slight over rich soot color. All ignition leads produced a spark, with the exception of No. 2 bottom ignition lead. The lead had continuity and was not grounding out. The magneto distributor cap was removed, and the ignition lead socket was examined. The inner contact surface was clean, but the lip of the socket had some carbon traces; the carbon traces were cleaned and the cap was re-installed. The engine was cleaned with compressed air and the propeller was replaced with a serviceable replacement. Three gallons of fuel were placed in the right tank due to the left tank being compromised; and the electric fuel pump was turned on to pressurize the system and check for leaks. No leaks were found. The fuel control rigging (throttle and mixture) was checked and both maximum and minimum travel was attained with normal effort from the cockpit controls.

It was determined that an engine run could be performed. The engine was started and allowed to warm up and all engine parameters were normal. The engine was then checked within the parameters of AD2001-06-17, and the engine settled at an even 600 rpm idle, with a 10 to 20 rpm rise as the mixture Vernier was slowly screwed out. The magneto drop check was performed at 1,200 rpm; with about a 50 rpm drop for both magnetos. The engine was then shut down normally with the mixture control, and again restarted with no anomalies noted.

History of Flight

Initial climb Simulated/training event
Initial climb Loss of engine power (partial) (Defining event)
Emergency descent Off-field or emergency landing
Emergency descent Collision with terr/obj (non-CFIT)

Check pilot Information

Certificate: Airline transport; Flight instructor 
Age: 57,Male
Airplane Rating(s): Single-engine land; Multi-engine land
Seat Occupied: Right
Other Aircraft Rating(s): None 
Restraint Used: 3-point
Instrument Rating(s): Airplane 
Second Pilot Present: Yes
Instructor Rating(s): Airplane multi-engine; Airplane single-engine; Instrument airplane
Toxicology Performed: No
Medical Certification: Class 1 With waivers/limitations 
Last FAA Medical Exam: June 4, 2014
Occupational Pilot: Yes 
Last Flight Review or Equivalent: January 5, 2014
Flight Time: 14300 hours (Total, all aircraft), 400 hours (Total, this make and model), 12800 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft), 45 hours (Last 90 days, all aircraft), 15 hours (Last 30 days, all aircraft)

Student pilot Information

Certificate: Student 
Age: 32,Male
Airplane Rating(s): Single-engine land 
Seat Occupied: Left
Other Aircraft Rating(s): None 
Restraint Used: 3-point
Instrument Rating(s): None
Second Pilot Present: Yes
Instructor Rating(s): None 
Toxicology Performed: No
Medical Certification: Class 3 Without waivers/limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: June 7, 2013
Occupational Pilot: No
Last Flight Review or Equivalent: January 6, 2015
Flight Time: 45 hours (Total, all aircraft), 45 hours (Total, this make and model), 12 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft), 31 hours (Last 90 days, all aircraft), 21 hours (Last 30 days, all aircraft)

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Cessna
Registration: N2102P
Model/Series: 172 S
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 2004 
Amateur Built: No
Airworthiness Certificate: Normal 
Serial Number: 172S9594
Landing Gear Type: Tricycle
Seats: 4
Date/Type of Last Inspection: November 18, 2014 100 hour
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 2299 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection: 48 Hrs
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 3670 Hrs at time of accident 
Engine Manufacturer: LYCOMING
ELT: C91 installed, activated, did not aid in locating accident
Engine Model/Series: IO-360-L2A
Registered Owner: 
Rated Power: 180 Horsepower
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: Visual (VMC)
Condition of Light: Day
Observation Facility, Elevation: PVG,28 ft msl
Distance from Accident Site: 2 Nautical Miles
Observation Time: 13:35 Local
Direction from Accident Site: 280°
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Visibility: 10 miles
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility (RVR):
Wind Speed/Gusts: 10 knots / 
Turbulence Type Forecast/Actual:  / None
Wind Direction: 260° 
Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual:  / N/A
Altimeter Setting: 30.09 inches Hg
Temperature/Dew Point: 11°C / 1°C
Precipitation and Obscuration: No Obscuration; No Precipitation
Departure Point: Norfolk, VA (PVG)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Destination: Norfolk, VA (PVG)
Type of Clearance: None
Departure Time: 13:00 Local
Type of Airspace: Class G

Airport Information

Airport: Hampton Roads Executive PVG
Runway Surface Type:
Airport Elevation: 28 ft msl
Runway Surface Condition: Vegetation
Runway Used:
IFR Approach: None
Runway Length/Width:
VFR Approach/Landing: Forced landing

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 2 None
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries:
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A 
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 2 None 
Latitude, Longitude: 36.780277,-76.467498(est)


  1. Replies
    1. Could be ... it’s in the ‘serious icing any power setting’ zone.

  2. Wow did he pass the checkride that is as real as it gets...

  3. 500 ft AGL? That’s asking to turn a simulated emergency into a real emergency. Good luck at this guy remaining a DPE, he lucky he didn’t kill them both.

  4. Carb ice with an injected engine? Doubtful.
    The engine was overloaded with fuel, likely due to the injection system not properly adjusted. The remedy would have been to leave throttle full in and pull mixture all the way out until it started.
    I experienced the same engine problem after in-air idling, saved after first turning the Fuel Pump ON, then OFF when nothing happened, then pulling Mixture and waiting until engine caught again, then advancing the Mixture to fly away before making contact with very tall trees. Not much time to do all that.

    1. SP version...did not know it was fuel injected.

  5. One thing we know for sure.... that nice 172 is a total loss... glad both got out O.K.

    1. No, was not a total loss.

      2015 was the "in the trees" accident. The plane was returned to service and last week it had a prop strike.

      Checking the logbook excerpt from the 2015 "in the trees" docket shows same S/N airframe as the current registration does. Same airplane, flying last week.

    2. You really think they repaired that much damage in a few weeks?