Sunday, August 08, 2021

Mooney M20M / 257 TLS Bravo, N9156Z: Fatal accident occurred August 07, 2021 in Victoria, Carver County, Minnesota

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 traveled to the scene of this accident.

Additional Participating Entities:
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Minneapolis, Minnesota
Lycoming Engines; Williamsport, Pennsylvania 
Mooney International Corp.; Kerrville, Texas


Location: Victoria, MN 
Accident Number: CEN21FA360
Date & Time: August 7, 2021, 17:40 Local
Registration: N9156Z
Aircraft: Mooney M20M
Injuries: 3 Fatal
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General aviation - Personal

On August 7, 2021, about 1740 central daylight time, a Mooney M20M, N9156Z, was destroyed when it was involved in an accident near Victoria, Minnesota. The private pilot and two passengers sustained fatal injuries. The airplane was operated as a Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 personal flight.

A review of preliminary air traffic control information revealed the airplane departed Chandler Field Airport (AXN), Alexandra, Minnesota, at 1654 on an instrument flight rules (IFR) flight plan and climbed to 5,000 ft mean sea level (msl) enroute to Flying Cloud Airport (FCM), Minneapolis, Minnesota. After a descent to 3,000 ft msl, the pilot was cleared to fly the instrument landing system (ILS) approach to Runway 10R at FCM.

About 9.5-miles from the runway while on final approach, the airplane tracked left of the ILS course and descended below 2,700 ft msl. The airplane then transitioned to a right turn and descended below 2,500 ft msl, which triggered a low altitude alert to the FCM tower controller. The controller transmitted a safety alert, which the pilot acknowledged. The airplane subsequently made an abrupt left turn and entered a rapid descent, during which radar contact and communications were lost. A distress call was not transmitted.

Several witnesses heard loud popping noises and observed the airplane in a rapid descent with both wings “folded up”. Review of security video near the accident site revealed the airplane was upright at ground impact, with both wings deflected up toward a vertical position.

The airplane impacted the ground on a northerly heading and a post impact fire ensued. Both wings were found separated from the fuselage, with the left- and right-wing main and rear spars fractured near the wing rib outboard of their respective main landing gear.

The left horizontal stabilizer and left elevator were found about 720 and 800 ft southwest of the accident site, respectively. The remainder of the airplane’s flight control surfaces were accounted for at the accident site. A 6-inch section of the main wing spar upper cap splice was found about 300 ft southwest of the accident site.

Initial examination revealed the left horizontal stabilizer separated about 6 inches outboard of the vertical stabilizer. The three outboard hinge blocks of the left elevator remained attached to the left horizontal stabilizer, with the rivets pulled out and sheared off the elevator. The main and rear wings spars were highly fragmented in the center of the airplane between the separated left and right wings. An 18-inch section of the main wing lower spar cap, located at the center of the main wing spar, was fractured at both ends.

The propeller was separated from the crankshaft due to impact damage. Two propeller blades were bent aft, one blade was curled forward, and all three blades exhibited chordwise and leading-edge scaring. The engine crankshaft was rotated, with normal thumb compression obtained at all cylinders. The airplane was retained for further examination.

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Mooney
Registration: N9156Z
Model/Series: M20M
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Amateur Built: No
Operator: On file
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: KFCM,907 ft msl 
Observation Time: 16:53 Local
Distance from Accident Site: 8 Nautical Miles 
Temperature/Dew Point: 22°C /20°C
Lowest Cloud Condition: 
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: 10 knots / , 80°
Lowest Ceiling: Overcast / 1100 ft AGL
Visibility: 9 miles
Altimeter Setting: 29.77 inches Hg 
Type of Flight Plan Filed: IFR
Departure Point: Alexandria, MN (AXN) 
Destination: Minneapolis, MN (FCM)

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Fatal 
Aircraft Damage: Destroyed
Passenger Injuries: 2 Fatal
Aircraft Fire: On-ground
Ground Injuries: 
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 3 Fatal 
Latitude, Longitude: 44.859074,-93.663331 

Those who may have information that might be relevant to the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) investigation may contact them by email witness@ntsb.gov, and any friends and family who want to contact investigators about the accident should email assistance@ntsb.gov. You can also call the NTSB Response Operations Center at 844-373-9922 or 202-314-6290.

Dr. James A. Edney
December 16, 1948 - August 7, 2021
~

Dr. James Edney, an Omaha surgeon who was recognized as a top breast cancer specialist in the region, died on August 7 in a tragic plane accident in Victoria, Minnesota. He was 72.

Dr. Edney served as a surgeon starting in 1975, at the University of Nebraska Medical Center. Early in his career, he completed a one-year fellowship at the University of Colorado. He treated thousands of cancer patients from Omaha and around the country. He was dedicated to finding new and innovative surgical treatments for breast cancer that were less invasive and made the disease more survivable. He was recognized for academic contributions to surgical oncology, and was known for his compassionate patient care.

He was a native of Omaha, and the oldest of five. Jim and his siblings grew up in Holy Name parish and went to grade school there. He graduated from Creighton Preparatory School, a Catholic high school in Omaha, in 1967. He attended Creighton University, where he joined the Phi Kappa Psi fraternity.

In 1972, he married Patricia McNamara, with whom he had three children. Michael Edney is a lawyer in Washington, DC, and lives in McLean, Virginia, with his wife Andrea and daughter. Christine Johnson is a realtor and lives in Olathe, Kansas, with her husband Collin and three children. Daniel Edney is a health care professional and lives in Sioux Falls, South Dakota with his wife Tiffany and their two children.

In 1992, he married his beloved wife, Deborah, who brought her three children to their lives: Jacob, Joy and Jordan. Joy Mertes-Smith lives in Omaha with her partner Dan Leland and two daughters. Jordan Mertes is a geophysicist who lives in Swansea, Wales. Jim was a devoted father and active grandfather.

From his earliest years, he spent wonderful summer days on Lake Miltona in Minnesota. He and his siblings would fish and swim, surrounded by brothers, sisters, mother, grandparents, aunts, uncles and countless cousins. As an adult, Jim and his wife Debbie began to spend their summers on the same lake and would welcome family and friends once the ice went out. Waterskiing, bonfires, fresh corn on the cob and sunset cruises punctuated the days.

Jim had a sharp, often acerbic, wit and largely impolitic sense of humor. You could locate his table at any restaurant by following the bursts of laughter. He read several books a week, and had a voracious curiosity about the people that he met and their stories.

At UNMC, he was Professor of Surgery, Chief of Surgical Oncology, and led the residency program and the training of scores of surgeons now spread throughout the country. Dr. Edney was elected president of the Southwest Surgical Congress in recognition of his academic contributions to surgical oncology, and also served as the president of the Western Trauma Association. He was a member of the Commission on Cancer of the American College of Surgeons. His numerous awards include a Golden Apple Teaching Award from UNMC surgery resident physicians.

He is preceded in death by his younger brother, Joseph Edney and their parents, Mary Jane Edney and John Edney. His stepson Jacob Mertes and Jacob's wife Sara Mertes tragically died in the same accident that took the life of Dr. Edney. Jim is survived by his wife, children, grandchildren, brother Dr. John (Pat) Edney, sisters Mary Lynn (Greg) Schwietz and Dr. Joanne (David) Edney-Coray, and numerous nieces and nephews.

Visitation will be Tuesday, Aug. 17 beginning at 5 p.m. at St. Cecilia’s Cathedral in Omaha, with a Wake Service at 7 p.m.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be Wednesday, Aug. 18th at St. Cecilia’s Cathedral at 11:15 a.m.

A Memorial Service will be held at St. Nicholas Catholic Church of Belle River, Minnesota, on Friday, Aug. 20 at 3 p.m., followed by burial in the church’s cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, the family invites donations to the James Edney Scholarship Fund at Creighton Prep.

Jacob Theodore Mertes
November 2, 1978 ~ August 7, 2021 (age 42)
~

Jacob Theodore Mertes passed away August 7, at the age of 42.

Jake, as he was known to family and friends, was born November 2, 1978, at Grand Forks Air Force Base, where his father was an Air Force pilot and his mother a nurse at the base hospital. He spent the majority of his life in the Midwest, living in Nebraska, North Dakota and Minnesota.

During his youth it was clearly evident that Jake was too smart for his own good and frequently outwitted both parents and his teachers. As a child, he often was found outside catching frogs, toads, snakes and turtles. He developed an early passion for herpetology, folk music, literature and poetry. By the age of 13 he could recite Shakespeare and Poe by heart.

He attended Creighton Preparatory School in Omaha, Neb. After leaving Prep, Jake set out on his own to explore the U.S., inspired by writers such as John Steinbeck and Jack Kerouac. Upon returning to Omaha, Jake served two years in the U.S. Navy. In 2008, he began studying biology at Valley City State University in North Dakota. He was a leader inside the classroom and out. He was respected by his professors and was considered a mentor by many classmates. He graduated in 2010 with a Bachelor of Science degree in biology and a minor in earth and environmental sciences.

Following his father’s death in 2013, Jake decided to move, but the question was where. He threw a dart at a map. It landed on Montana. He loaded his dog Major into the car and began to drive west. One evening he stopped to camp in the Cabinet Mountains just outside Libby. The following morning, he was so enamored with the beauty of the area that he made the decision to begin a new life there.

While in Libby, Jake worked as an emergency medical technician for the local volunteer ambulance service; he was a much-loved substitute schoolteacher; and ultimately he began working for the Lincoln County government as an environmental health and planning specialist, a job he held until his death. The community benefited from his commitment to service and professionalism.

In 2016-17 Jake met Sara Huddleston, a family medicine practitioner and medical director at Cabinet Peaks Medical Center. They fell in love and were married in 2018 in Ireland, with a small group of friends and family in attendance. While visiting, they experienced the country to its fullest: rock climbing, getting stuck in peat bogs and stopping in pubs. They ultimately summited the highest mountain in Donegal, Mt. Errigal.

Jake loved the outdoors and traveling. Almost every weekend, he and Sara backpacked, swam, hiked, biked, climbed, snowshoed or skied, and generally explored the world together. They went on more adventures in their short time together than most people do in a lifetime.

He was a connoisseur of laughter, fine cigars and whisky. Many would describe Jake as a grown-up child. He adored kids and taught many children to appreciate the outdoors. He also loved sharing his passion and knowledge for herpetology with those around him, but with no one more than his niece, Lucy, a 9-year-old herpetologist prodigy.

Like many in his family he had a desire to fly. He recently completed two cross-country solos, among the final steps needed to obtain his pilot’s license.

He was preceded in death by his father, Roger Joseph Mertes; grandfather, Theodore Mertes; and uncle John Mertes. Jacob’s beloved wife Sara and stepfather Dr. James Edney tragically died in the same plane accident.

He is survived by his mother, Deborah L. Bilodeau Edney; sisters, Joy Mertes-Smith (Dan Leland) and Molly; brother, Jordan; stepsiblings, Michael (Andrea) Edney, Christine (Collin) Johnson and Daniel (Tiffany) Edney; grandmother, Esther Mertes; and many nieces, nephews, aunts, uncles and cousins in the Mertes, Priebe, Edney and Schwietz families.

Jake will be missed for his wry sense of humor, his endless pranks, his great laugh, and his love for friends and family. But he will be missed for his big heart most of all.

There will be a memorial service in Minnesota at 11 a.m., Sept. 17 at Anderson’s Funeral Home, 659 Voyager Dr., Alexandria, MN 56308.

Libby Services will be announced as details are finalized with family.

Jake and Sara Mertes were rich is spirit and love, with a matching zeal for adventure. The community of Libby is organizing a fund where donated contributions will be used to aid local organizations that supported their passion for the outdoors and for health care. In lieu of flowers, friends and family ask that donations be made via GoFundMe to support this endeavor. To donate to the memory of Jake and Sara, please visit http://gofund.me/2445dadF. We will notify donors how these funds are utilized.

A celebration of life will be held in Libby at 4 p.m., Oct. 1 at River Bend Restaurant.

Jacob Mertes and Dr. Sara Mertes

Jacob Mertes and Dr. Sara Mertes

 "July 2021 - Flight to Door County at 15,500 ... oxygen required."
Dr. James Edney

Jacob Mertes and Dr. Sara Mertes


 National Transportation Safety Board officials speaking with media after three people died Saturday when a plane came crashing to the ground in Victoria, Minnesota.




Dr. Sara Mertes, MD

Dr. Edney and Maizzie


Jacob Mertes and Dr. Sara Mertes

Dr. Sara Mertes, MD



Dr. James Edney





MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – Before the plane crashed in Victoria, pieces of it fell off and landed in Jim Frey’s lawn just blocks away.

Investigators say it was portions of the left elevator and left horizontal stabilizer on the back end of the plane.

“I got up out of my chair and I looked around my apple tree, there’s about six to seven-foot-long wing,” said Frey.

“That would definitely indicate that those fell off during flight,” said National Transportation Safety Board Investigator Mike Folkerts.

Without that piece of the plane, investigators say the pilot would have no control over where it lands.

The plane happened to land in a vacant lot but it could have been much worse as it’s right next to a highway, homes, and businesses.

“It kind of shook us up, we’re lucky it didn’t hit our house, I mean three pieces like that,” said Frey.

On board, 72-year-old Dr. James Edney a prominent surgeon from the Omaha area piloted the plan. His colleagues at the University of Nebraska Medical Center are referring to him as one of the top breast cancer specialists in the region.

His wife tells us their son and daughter-in-law were also on board, 42-year-old Jacob Mertes and his 37-year-old wife, Dr. Sara Mertes, of Libby, Montana.

NTSB investigators confirm no one survived the crash on Sunday.

“There was no distress call made,” said Folkerts.

But investigators say the plane was in contact with air traffic control before the crash.

It was coming from Alexandria and was 10 miles from its destination the Flying Cloud Airport in Eden Prairie. It was cleared to land just before the crash.

“Our only focus here is to prevent another tragedy,” said Folkerts.

There is some engine data that investigators will look at along with plane maintenance logs and the pilot’s history and medical records.

They’ll also review the weather conditions from Saturday and talk to other pilots who flew through the area that day.


June 2012 - DPE and Dr. Edney


An Omaha surgeon and two relatives were killed in a plane crash Saturday evening in Victoria, according to family.

Jo Mertes of Mantador, North Dakota, confirmed in a phone call Sunday that her nephew, Jacob Mertes, was a passenger in the Mooney M20M / 257 TLS Bravo plane that crashed.

Jacob Mertes, 42, of Libby, Montana, was on the plane with his wife, Sara Mertes, MD  (Huddleston), 37, and stepfather, Dr. James Edney, 72, who was the pilot, according to Jo Mertes.

The Federal Aviation Administration has not identified the pilot or other victims, but the Carver County Sheriff's Office said there were "multiple victims" and "no survivors."

The City of Victoria said in a statement on the crash that there are "confirmed fatalities," but none from the nearby house on Rose Street that was struck by the plane and caught on fire. The family was home at the time of the crash, but no one there was injured, nor were any bystanders.

"This is a tragic event that happened near the heart of Victoria and our community will keep the victims of this incident and their loved ones in our thoughts and prayers during this time," the city said in the statement.

The plane is owned by Edney, an Omaha general surgeon and professor of surgery at University of Nebraska Medical Center. Sara Mertes' Facebook page shows that she was a physician at Cabinet Peaks Medical Center in Libby, while Jacob Mertes worked as a sanitarian and planner for the Lincoln County Health Department.








98 comments:

  1. CCTV footage shows he came down like a bullet with one or two wing(s) folded up, the family inside the house were very lucky.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QFkZyapc4ew

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I agree, at 17:40.06 you can see that at least the left wing appears already detaching and almost vertical.

      Delete
    2. Both wings were folded up, creating a "feather" effect similar to how the Virgin Galactic vehicle manages it's descent. The Mooney forum is having a spirited argument about when the wings folded, due to disbelief that the Mooney could have failed the main spar that way.

      Inertial physics makes it impossible for the mass of the wings to translate from being horizontal to standing vertical in a fraction of a second between the first visible frame and the next.

      The distraction of the "folded between video frame one and frame two" argument that defies physics has people ignoring the fact that a stabilized fall at low forward speed is consistent for a mass at the bottom with identically folded wings trailing overhead, same as a vertically falling arrow from a bow or badminton shuttle will behave.

      Delete
    3. It looks like this is now a myth :

      "Mooneys have a single, carry-through spar that goes from wingtip to wingtip. One has never broken up in flight."

      https://www.pilotsofamerica.com/community/threads/weird-paranoia-about-wing-spars.68690/page-2

      Delete
    4. "Mooneys have a single, carry-through spar that goes from wingtip to wingtip. One has never broken up in flight."

      Video still on impact clearly shows both wings folded up. Then an apparent eye witness comment on the YT link above...


      Chris
      22 hours ago
      "I saw the whole thing from start to finish. I was standing by my car in the holiday gas station across the street when I heard a low flying airplane, I looked up to see it approaching from the southwest in a steep left bank to the north, diving, and at a high rate of speed. It appeared the plane then attempted to level off abruptly at which point both wings folded up and it started plummeting to the ground. There were some small pieces of debris falling off, sounds like there were parts of the tail section found in yards to the south. It looked for a moment that the plane was going to come down right where I was in the parking lot but it passed overhead and hit the ground across the street. Have not heard anyone else mention the wings folding up but it was plain as day to me and also clearly visible in this footage right before impact."

      Delete
    5. No lookup required, the 1998 wing fold was already documented in KR comments. Here it is, again:

      The Rocket Engineering modified M20K (N231BY) breakup in 1998 was attributed to exceeding Vne with flutter-induced tail surface separations and subsequent pitch change and wing fold:

      https://app.ntsb.gov/pdfgenerator/ReportGeneratorFile.ashx?EventID=20001211X10119&AKey=1&RType=Final&IType=FA

      Delete
  2. I extracted a frame from the video. :(

    https://wildlightimagingstudio.com/img/s/v-10/p4152319906-6.jpg

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yep. I was able to hit pause at that exact frame. Clearly both wings folded at what appears to be the exact same location on both wings as the folded wings are roughly the same length. This isn't supposed to happen to a Mooney. But it did. The cause needs to be rooted out ASAP.

      Delete
    2. Definitely. From what little I know about Mooney's the wing spar should have folded, especially not like that.

      Delete
  3. last ADS pin
    Speed: 121 kt
    Altitude: ▼ 1,100 ft
    Vert. Rate: -9600 ft/min
    Track: 9.5°
    Pos.: 44.858°, -93.663°

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Regarding the -9600 ft/min vertical descent rate, which comes from Adsbexchange:

      Looking at the final nine data points plotted in the Adsbexchange track finds large vertical rates in each of them, plus some data irregularities.

      Reported data:
      Time/Altitude/Vert(FpM)
      39:39 2,700 -5,888
      39:41 2,500 -8,640
      39:42 2,300 -10,112
      39:43 2,200 -11,520
      39:44 2,200 -10,368
      39:45 1,900 -9,088
      39:45 1,900 -9,600
      39:46 1,400 -9,600
      39:47 1,100 -9,600

      The lack of uniform progression of altitude change from the first of the two repeated 2,200 foot data points and the second of the two repeated 1,900 foot data points looks like glitching or retention of previous data.

      Those three identical -9,600 feet per minute reported vertical rates in a row for the final data points don't inspire much confidence in their individual accuracy.

      Delete
    2. ADSB
      https://globe.adsbexchange.com/?icao=acac80&lat=44.858&lon=-93.667&zoom=16.7&showTrace=2021-08-07

      Delete
    3. If that data is correct it fell approximately 1,600 feet in 8 seconds. 1,600 ft / 8 sec. = 200 ft./sec. * 60 sec./min = 12,000 ft./min. average vertical descent rate, or approximately 118 knots. ADS-B reports data to the nearest hundred feet. The reason why you may see the same altitude reported over multiple frames is probably due to rounding errors.

      Delete
    4. More to it than rounding errors. Every vertical rate ever reported on Adsbexchange.com is evenly divisible by 64 (see for yourself!). That has to do with the data word that represents vertical rate.

      Few can bear seeing a full discussion on the ADS-B data standards, plus "squittering" and how to process received data. Heck, most people aren't even aware that the pressure altitude reported in ADS-B is uncorrected for local altimeter, carrying in typical error offsets of 200 to 300 feet.

      Delete
    5. May be because transpondars operate on base 8. (0000 to 7777). Then again, I just pulled that out of my backside.

      Delete
    6. A better reference to pull out from:

      Vertical rate raw data in extended squitter ADS-B is Bit 38 to 46 as defined in ICAO DOC 9871 Tables A-5 and A-6, which is readily viewable beginning at pdf sheet 70 (document page marked 54) here:
      https://www.skybrary.aero/bookshelf/books/2851.pdf

      Delete
  4. Exact crash location.
    https://www.google.com/maps/place/44%C2%B051'32.9%22N+93%C2%B039'48.3%22W/@44.8589471,-93.6638072,199m/data=!3m1!1e3!4m6!3m5!1s0x0:0x0!7e2!8m2!3d44.8591367!4d-93.6634088?hl=en

    Street view
    https://www.google.com/maps/@44.8589285,-93.6637443,3a,59.1y,34.5h,95.99t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1s2pQctnQG0dOrS_zw27jXkA!2e0!7i16384!8i8192?hl=en

    ReplyDelete
  5. ADS-B also shows possible updraft just prior to descent .. it appears they ran into some very turbulent airflow very quickly ... RIP :(

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Not limited to updrafts.

      Vertical currents in and around TS can easily exceed 6000 fpm, and what was a 6000 fpm updraft can instantly change to a downdraft of the same velocity.

      No aircraft of any kind can survive the kind of shear that even "small" TS easily dish out.

      Delete
  6. When an airplane's wing spars fail catastrophically, the wings usually do not remain attached to the airplane.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. This aircraft has a wing spar continuous from tip to tip. Significant G loading to fold them up like in this case.

      Delete
  7. The separations from the tail in this accident are reminiscent of the only other Mooney wing fold event, which occurred in 1998.

    Mooney pitch trim tilts the entire empennage instead of using trim tabs. Any remaining remnant of horizontal stabilizer exerts pitch forces based on the pitch angle that the tilting empennage is set to.

    Some useful info on Vne, flutter and the 1998 M20K breakup:

    M20M Vne is 225 m.p.h. (195 knots) IAS
    (Per Pg 40 of the type certification):
    https://rgl.faa.gov/Regulatory_and_Guidance_Library/rgMakeModel.nsf/0/cd54a24fc81bae1c86257df20054b12c/%24FILE/2A3_Rev_56.pdf

    The Rocket Engineering modified M20K (N231BY) breakup in 1998 was attributed to exceeding Vne with flutter-induced tail surface separations and subsequent pitch change and wing fold:

    https://app.ntsb.gov/pdfgenerator/ReportGeneratorFile.ashx?EventID=20001211X10119&AKey=1&RType=Final&IType=FA

    From the N231BY report:
    A FAA certification specialist concluded: "The airplane lost the horizontal tail due to some type of induced flutter, and then tumbled tail up and over, until the wings broke down and off, prior to impact with the ground."

    "During a discussion regarding flutter, the participants indicated that the onset of elevator flutter in this model airplane occurs at speeds in excess of about 241 knots calibrated airspeed."

    In the 1998 accident, the trim of the N231BY empennage was found in full nose down position.

    If N9156Z somehow achieved sufficient airspeed from the low altitude it was flying at to induce flutter, the trim adjustment that N9156Z's pilot had set for landing will be a factor in the observed nose-up response to tail component separation.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. "in the observed nose-up response to tail component separation."

      The horizontal stabilizer exerts down force on most traditionally configured planes.

      Loss of the stabilizer should result in a sudden nose *down* pitch (as per your own quote of the FAA specialist referring to the 1998 incident: "and then tumbled tail up and over, until the wings broke down and off" - tail up is equivalent to nose down)

      This is the opposite direction from the apparent final configuration of the wings on the plane in the current incident.

      Delete
    2. But not all horizontal stab surface on N9156Z was lost.

      Reading again:
      "Mooney pitch trim tilts the entire empennage instead of using trim tabs. Any remaining remnant of horizontal stabilizer exerts pitch forces based on the pitch angle that the tilting empennage is set to."

      In the 1998 crash, the trim of the N231BY empennage was found in full nose down position.

      The trim position that N9156Z's empennage was at will be known when the jackscrew is examined. If you don't believe that the pitch angle of the remaining stabilizer remnants that did not separate had any influence at high airspeed, okay then.

      Delete
  8. What were weather conditions- was there a cloud layer for spatial disorientation? Did other’s note turbulence? Could a medical event triggered the dive?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. This has all the hallmarks of spatial disorientation resulting in a spiral dive and overstressing and structural failure. Look at the FR24 path in three dimensions and you’ll see it. Several maneuvers including heading and altitude changes, then a spiraling, descending turn to the left just before impact.

      Here are the ASOS and METARs from Glencoe and Flying Cloud at that time:

      KGYL 072235Z AUTO 06007KT 10SM OVC008 23/21 A2977 RMK AO2 T02270205
      KFCM 072235Z AUTO 08010KT 10SM OVC011 22/19 A2977 RMK T02200190 MADISHF
      KFCM 072240Z AUTO 08008KT 10SM OVC011 22/19 A2977 RMK T02200190 MADISHF

      And it’s not much different for the several hours before and after the accident.

      Turbulence from departing/decaying thunderstorm outflow could certainly be a factor in the initial upset, but I doubt it. To support the possible (but unlikely) thunderstorm outflow hypothesis, I will point out an additional ASOS report from KFCM ~30 minutes prior to the accident:

      KFCM 072215Z AUTO 08011KT 10SM OVC011 22/20 A2977 RMK T02200200 LTG DSNT S! MADISHF

      This storm was 20-30 miles SE of KFCM and there was no discernible outflow to the west on radar.

      Delete
    2. I wrote up an overview of the weather for this flight in my blog. It's a short read - https://www.avwxtraining.com/post/weather-analysis-for-recent-mooney-accident-near-minneapolis

      Delete
  9. "Mooney flight: Speed Control. While Mooneys are easy and pleasant to fly, if all your flight training has been in high-wing nose draggers, you should consider some on-the-job training before you launch off to see the world in your spiffy new mod Mooney.

    There are two main elements that pilots trained in Brand C airplanes should always to keep in mind: Speed Control, and Plan Ahead. Fortunately, if you can manage one of these, the 8 other falls into place. Mooneys don’t have big slow-down flaps so decent and approach planning requires a good deal more sensitivity. A high approach with full flaps hung out at the last minute just doesn’t do the job for a Mooney—you’ve got to plan ahead for your position, elevation and airspeed.

    If your Mooney is equipped with Precise Flight speed brakes, part of the problem is solved. The airflow spoiling brakes will really help you slow down, and they’ll help you make power-on rapid descents from high altitude without shock cooling your engine. All turbocharged Mooneys ought to be equipped with these brakes." https://lasar.com/buyers-guide

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I used to fly a 182 jump plane with electric Precise Flight speed brakes. Without a doubt, the best investment for skydiving ops the owner could have made. 2 minutes 30 seconds after the last jumper left, at 12,500 feet above the airport, I was touching down. And that's keeping 20 inches of manifold pressure, once I descended to where pressure was enough to have 20 inches, all the way down.
      I agree, Mooneys should have speed brakes as standard equipment.

      Delete
    2. Every Mooney produced, at least from 1998 (when I got there) and forward, were equipped with Precise Flight electric speed brakes.

      Delete
  10. Any potential that a downburst or some weather anomaly might have contributed? Plane hit like a ton but if it was already coming apart prior you just fall like a rock. Did look like the nose was up and hit ground tail first like a heal to toe landing. Sad for everyone in the family.

    ReplyDelete
  11. This is the kind of accident that made the V-tail Bonanza a "fork tailed doctor killer". Both airplanes are slippery, and you can't yank the controls when you're hauling ass. Lots of people are going to come up with theories, but the easiest one is the one that is right in front of us.

    ReplyDelete
  12. I hope that dog wasn't on board at the time.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You missed it…..he was the pilot

      Delete
    2. A dog hangs out on that front yard and would have been most likely killed if he wasn't in the house at the time.

      Delete
  13. Here's his info:
    JAMES AUGUSTINE EDNEY
    12930 BURT ST
    OMAHA NE 68154-4020
    County: DOUGLAS
    Country: USA

    Medical Information:
    Medical Class: Third Medical Date: 8/2015
    MUST WEAR CORRECTIVE LENSES.
    BasicMed Course Date: 2/18/2020 BasicMed CMEC Date: 9/11/2017
    Certificates
    PRIVATE PILOT
    Certificates Description
    Certificate: PRIVATE PILOT
    Date of Issue: 3/17/2016

    Ratings:
    PRIVATE PILOT
    AIRPLANE SINGLE ENGINE LAND
    INSTRUMENT AIRPLANE


    Limits:
    ENGLISH PROFICIENT.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It looks like one of the passengers Jacob Mertes had a student pilot certificate:

      JACOB THEODORE MERTES
      Airman opted-out of releasing address
      Medical Information:
      No Medical Information Available
      Certificates
      STUDENT PILOT
      Certificates Description
      Certificate: STUDENT PILOT
      Date of Issue: 8/5/2020

      Limits:
      CARRYING PASSENGERS IS PROHIBITED.

      Also what could be a duplicate entry with a student pilot cert and medical from 10 years earlier:
      J THEODORE MERTES
      *********************
      DETROIT LAKES MN 56501-7237
      County: BECKER
      Country: USA
      Medical Information:
      Medical Class: Third Medical Date: 8/2010
      BasicMed Course Date: None BasicMed CMEC Date: None
      Certificates
      STUDENT PILOT
      Certificates Description
      Certificate: STUDENT PILOT
      Date of Issue: 8/10/2010

      Delete
  14. While I have guesses for whatever reason to date I've not seen someone with oxygen under the nose as in one of the pictures. Is this a normal thing for some who fly at altitude or have health concerns to bring oxygen and wear it like that?

    Not trying to be a wise guy, but in all my years I've never seen someone using oxygen like that in a plane and was scratching my head. As if "is this guy like the people I've seen at Walmart who are so ill they drive the little electric carts and get winded simply by checking out... and that same type of guy is trying to operate a plane? Which wasn't meant to be flippant but holy hell the first thing I thought was "how did someone who'd need this pass medical certification?!"

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's unclear where the photo was taken, but it could have been a flight at high altitude where any pilot would benefit from supplemental oxygen.

      And above 10,000 / 12,000 feet in unpressurized aircraft, it's legally required to be used.

      Delete
    2. The Mooney has a service ceiling of 18.5k but isn't pressurised so if he wanted to go higher than ~12k say to catch a good tail wind or go over weather he'd be using supplementary oxygen which is what the image shows. It's also possible that he used it at lower altitudes as a back up given his age etc.

      Delete
    3. Yes.
      It is perfectly normal.

      Check this:
      https://www.mhoxygen.com/

      It shows that the accident pilot was a responsible pilot by using oxygen in his unpressurized aircraft above certain altitudes. It is a legal requirement as well.

      https://www.law.cornell.edu/cfr/text/14/91.211

      Delete
    4. Mooney good to 18.5k.
      Healthy Humans need supplemental oxygen >12k.
      He may have also used it below 12 to play it safe given his age.

      Delete
    5. Posting photos to social media has downsides. Pilots would not expect to get criticized online for proper use of supplemental oxygen in unpressurized aircraft in accordance with regulations, but here we are.

      Delete
    6. Hello Colin,
      Just curious - are you a certificated pilot?

      Delete
    7. "... but in all my years I've never seen someone using oxygen like that in a plane and was scratching my head."

      Colin. You've never seen a pilot wear a cannula? Almost every pilot I know prefers a cannula to a mask.

      How much time have you actually spent around airplanes?? Seriously.

      Delete
    8. Crickets. Colin is nonresponsive.

      Delete
    9. Colin: You sound ignorant and uneducated.

      Delete
    10. Colin: From your comment you are probably not a pilot. Most responsible pilots will use supplemental oxygen, usually via nasal cannula, above 10 - 12K ft msl. It's a legal requirement for pilots above 12,500 ft (for more than 30 min) or above 14,000ft. Cannulae are restricted by federal aviation regulations to 18,000 ft msl; above that masks (or pressurized cabins with supplemental masks) are required. Oxygen use is also recommended above 5000 ft msl when flying at night.

      Delete
    11. Stu
      Incorrect. This 1992 Mooney has a service celling of 25,000 ft according to the specs. Not 18,500.

      Using L Model Airframe, the M20M Debuted as "TLS" (Turbo-Lycoming Sabre) with TIO-540-AF1, 220kts TAS @FL250.

      Delete
  15. How about this scenario. PIC suffers a medical emergency and is unresponsive. Non pilot passenger in right seat sees the ground coming up very fast and instinctively hauls back on the control yolk with maximum effort. Way above VA and the inevitable happens.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. This is certainly a possibility. There is ATC audio out there and the tower clears him to 10R three times because he doesn't respond. When he finally does respond he sounds somewhat incoherent. The tower controller picks up on this and asks if he needs assistance. I'm sure the NTSB is considering this as well.

      Delete
    2. That's it what it seems like to me. The pilot had a medical emergency in the soup and the non-pilot wasn't able to fly in IMC (understandably)

      Delete
  16. At an age of 67, many pilots are no longer actively flying at that age; a rather odd time to just be getting into flying. If flying IFR then guessing he would have been at least 68 or 69 before obtaining an IFR rating. So here is an elderly man, a low-time pilot, flying a high-performance complex aircraft into IMC conditions. Obvious by FlightRadar track he was relying on autopilot for much of the trip since nobody can fly THAT straight by hand....had to be autopilot. Perhaps due to turbulence the AP disconnected...or perhaps he shut it off accidently while responding to approach instructions. The time when ATC clears you for an approach and hands you off to a tower can be one of the busier times for an IFR flight. You are busy following instructions and reading back a long set of instructions normally......can be daunting for a low-time IFR pilot. In the ATC recording with KFCM tower the pilot sounded busy or confused. Once he established contact with tower, it took 3 or 4 attempts by tower to get pilot to acknowledge his landing clearance, and when he did his readback was improper as he did not repeat the landing runway but only said his airplane number. Clearly overwhelmed by fast complex airplane, IFR flying, AP no longer controlling airplane whether on purpose or accidently, probable IMC conditions with turbulance, dealing with lack of experience and ....sorry ...old man reactions, and probably too much reliance on technology and failing to properly monitor that technology.....this was just one big disaster waiting to happen.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Bought the plane in 2012, was 63 then. Not to argue with your points about fitness for duty, but IMC accidents from over reliance on technology is a growing problem that kills all ages of bold pilots.

      Delete
    2. I agree.....I too hope to still be flying into my 70s someday. I have been flying since 20 and am now 58 and would consider the Mooney in IFR a handful for a single pilot even now. I don't think with his 5 years being a private pilot he was likely to have the hours behind him to handle unexpected challenges thrown at him. But who knows.....it is all guesswork. A waste of three fine lives.

      Delete
    3. I was issued my Private Pilot's license in 1987 when SSNs were used as the certificate number, but when I changed addresses and updated to a non-SSN number the issue date was amended to 2018. This means the issue date does not guarantee he first received his license in 2016.

      Delete
    4. You're right. He purchased the Mooney in April 2012, and this might not have been his first airplane. He'd been flying for at least 10 years.

      Fact remains that the Mooney is a very fast airplane with a high rate of roll and quick acceleration when pointed downhill.

      Delete
    5. No, it's not an "odd" time to begin flying. I have 2 friends who retired and took up flying because now they have the time and money to enjoy a hobby they have always wanted to pursue.

      Delete
    6. He was a high time pilot who’d been flying over 40 years, and he’d been flying that fast, complex airplane all over the US and Canada more than 100 hours/year for over 10 years.

      Delete
  17. Video shows How many people dropped what they were doing to try and help out, Humanity is still there, Prayers Up to All Involved...

    ReplyDelete
  18. The Mooney Bravo is a turbocharged piston aircraft, which means it is capable of operating at altitudes into the low 20,000’s, and the cabin is not pressurized. All of the major manufacturers of general aviation aircraft have similar models. Since the air is thin, the pilot and crew are required to use supplemental oxygen for any part of a flight exceeding thirty minutes above 12,500 feet, and at all times above 14,000. Nasal cannulas of the type in the photo can be used up to 18,000, and above that the pilot must use a mask. There is a built-in tank in the back of the aircraft and oxygen ports for each of the four seats in the aircraft. Actually, you have seen oxygen masks if you watched the movie Top Gun, or any of many similar movies in which military pilots and crew use masks. The photo of Dr. Edney in better times, wearing a nasal cannula, has no bearing on his medical condition. Pilots of his age must pass an FAA flight physical every two years, must carry their medical certificate, and must report their medical history in detail.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Info below is offered without judging this pilot's fitness:

      The pilot wasn't on the FAA flight physical 2 year interval. He moved to the four year non-AME physical examination interval of BasicMed in 2017 when his previous Third Class expired.

      He may have have been examined in the last 30 days and records have just not caught up. His initial BasicMed pilot medical certification (which can be performed by any state licensed doctor) was performed on 9/11/2017.

      Clipped from Airmen Registry for JAMES AUGUSTINE EDNEY:
      Medical Information:
      Medical Class: Third Medical Date: 8/2015
      MUST WEAR CORRECTIVE LENSES.
      BasicMed Course Date: 2/18/2020 BasicMed CMEC Date: 9/11/2017

      FAA released a report in June 2021 comparing BasicMed pilot accidents to Third Class medical pilot accidents, covering the period from May 1, 2017, through December 31, 2019. Results show minimal difference in accident rates.* **

      *The study covers just the first two years of BasicMed, which began May 1, 2017. Accident occurring after December 31, 2019 by BasiMed pilots in their third and fourth years since the last medical exam are thus not included in the study.

      **The study estimated the number of hours flown. A criticism can be made about validity of estimating hours flown going forward based on the hours flown before those pilots moved to BasicMed.

      Here is a clip from the study, page 9:

      Estimated flight hours: We estimated total flight hours for the group in question derived by first estimating annual flight time based on six months of flight time reported on each pilot’s previous two medical exams (if only one exam was available, we recorded the single exam twice). We calculated estimated flight hours by multiplying total time in years by estimated annual flight time hours.

      The June 2021 report:
      https://www.faa.gov/data_research/research/med_humanfacs/oamtechreports/2020s/media/202118.pdf

      Delete
  19. Given the known strength of the tubular spar in the Mooney wing my conclusion is corrosion . Maybe water gathered in the central section over time .Plane was 29 years old . I know that the Cessna 210 has had a few wing failures due to corrosion and there is a program to replace the wing spar in them ..least out here in Australia . A few years ago a wing came off a 210 in Darwin just after take off .. no survivors . Ironically it was taking an aboriginal mans body over to Groote Island NT .This is what what worries me about old GA aircraft ..the age and hidden corrosion.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Mooney N231BY that experienced wing fold had no corrosion.
      Clip from bottom of page six in the report:

      "There was no indication from the structural fractures of corrosion or fatigue failure being present"

      https://app.ntsb.gov/pdfgenerator/ReportGeneratorFile.ashx?EventID=20001211X10119&AKey=1&RType=Final&IType=FA

      Delete
    2. the mooney has a steel tube truss fuselage forward section, and an aluminum structure wing, not a steel tubular spar

      Delete
  20. hese days I'm a pilot flying recreational aircraft out in Australia and if this crash was due to a spiral dive coming out of IMC just wonder if pilots are aware of a unconventional maneuver to counter a spiral dive . I've tried this maneuver and it works in the aircraft I fly -- Australian designed Gazelle- but should work in most single engine GA aircraft like Cessnas ,Pipers. Its like this -- you enter a cloud and a spiral dive is developing ,speed is rapidly climbing and you are disorientated ,the instruments are all over the place -- 2 mins to live --its all going out of control so try this . 1) pull the throttle back to idle 2) set pitch to full nose up 3) drop the wheels 4) 'ease down' the flaps .5) hands off the controls --yes hands off . What 'should' happen and does in my aircraft is the speed will stabilise in a constant low speed constant bank angle descending spiral usually to the left and this is because of drag and the phenomenon of underbanking of the inboard wing . The worst that will happen is a stall but a stall won't cause the plane to fall apart in the sky .The drag induced stops overspeeding . So the survival tactic is let the now stabilised aircraft pop out of the cloud and resume normal flight .You must act rapidly and in tests I noticed the speed climbs briefly then falls to a low stable speed . In the Gazelle--which has no flaps by the way -- speed peaked at 70kts then stabilised to 65kts the bank angle stabilsed to 30 degrees to the left after I induced a left banking spiral dive . Also I found that once the speed has stabilsed well below Vne (93kts ) its easy to finger push the yoke back to the level position--don't grab it . The artificial horizontal is now stable, speed is now stable bank angle is stable ,descent rate is stable . Now this maneuver MUST be tested on each aircraft --stress with an instructor--and take it in steps . Get to know your aircraft . Interestingly if you bank to the right and let a spiral dive start to develop and perform the above the aircraft will stabilise to an approx level attitude ..this being due to wash induced by the counter rotation of the windmilling prop and hitting the rudder on the left side .In fact I couldn't make the aircraft stay in a right bank . In slippery aircraft like say a Mooney porpoising from stall to high speed may result but this will depend on how the above steps are applied .Pulling the throttle and pitch up will be fine but dropping the flap too fast may cause porpoising and flap damage too .. Anyway hope it helps as it seems to work. In a spiral dive it may be all you've got . Otherwise perhaps higher speed aircraft like Mooneys should have a drogue chute in the tail to auto deploy in overspeed .

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That's a lot to expect a disoriented pilot suffering from sensory illusion at 2500' AGL to do.

      Delete
    2. Interesting to see this!!! With several thousand hours in gliders capable of generating lots of drag (thanks to 90-degree landing flaps), but essentially no power time, I've long wondered if there might be some power planes/pilots that might similarly benefit from high-drag/low-speed/hands-off aircraft capability. (Glider pilots flying wave cannot ignore the possibility of getting trapped on-top-of/in a lenticular cloud, nor is it impossible to inadvertently "go IMC" while soaring in convective conditions.) Once I "discovered" this capability in (two of) my own sailplanes, I fretted less about inadvertent IMC.

      As with any emergency procedure, practice and mental preparation is key...

      Delete
  21. Just to be clear --pitch nose up with full trim

    ReplyDelete
  22. whatever the reason/s for the crash frightening video may these people rest in peace and condolences to family, friends and the communities they served

    ReplyDelete
  23. Isn't the idle speed, hands off technique useable in all situations in commercially build aircraft? It's called "inherently stable." It should right itself, then you casually pull it out of the turning dive. Least that's what I remember.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sure absolutely so why don't pilots do this? A spiral dive is really about exceeding VNE so if you put in as a much drag as you can you won't exceed VNE . If you drop into a spin then thats ok so do spin recovery and er ' ignore the screaming' . A spin won't destroy the plane . Pilots should understand the phenomena of underbanking too . Drag and underbanking lead to stability . Training needs to include survival tactics which are not in the book . For example I did full flap spins in a C150 which technically are illegal in Australia but it nearly happened on takeoff once for real ..I flipped the flap switch the wrong way took off with full flaps ...and so I write to you today ...alive .. For every 3 hours I spend in going from A to B I put 1 hour into 'what if' training

      Delete
    2. "Spiral dives" and "stability" are completely separate concepts. Any "inherently stable" aircraft can enter a spiral dive, given the right circumstances (often, inadvertent VFR into IFR conditions). What "Mr. Australia" and I mention relating to "gobs of drag" serving as a possible mitigater to the potentially-deadly speed buildup associated with "your average spiral dive" - which generally/quickly leads to wings being shed - might be analogized to falling free or falling beneath an open parachute canopy. (It's a lousy analogy, yes, but the concept should be clear...drag-limiting of uncontrolled-descent-related/VNE-exceeding airspeed buildup can be a life-saver.) For the record, I doubt many GA aircraft have sufficient drag as to make it a universally-viable option...but it's sure something thoughtful GA pilots should consider/safely-practice beforehand "just because they can"...and it *might* be their life-saver, some day.

      Delete
  24. "I looked up to see it approaching from the southwest in a steep left bank to the north, diving, and at a high rate of speed. It appeared the plane then attempted to level off abruptly at which point both wings folded up and it started plummeting to the ground. " -- so does this not look like a standard attempt to level the wings as part of spiral dive recovery ?... however in this case it seems the ailerons were perhaps applied too fast/hard resulting in wing failure ? totally understandable and its no fault of the pilot but does point to a possible design issue . Were there flight tests done to stress test the wing in a spiral dive during the certification process? I would assume so . I know that Glider pilots are very cautious about doing fast rolls as those aileron forces on those long wings can/will cause wing failure . A wing under high load/stress in a spiral dive needs cautious gentle handling --standard procedure -ease the aircraft to level attitude ,cut the power , ease the pitch/nose upward . In higher speed aircraft without power assistance the roll controls feel hard for a good reason ... there are significant airflow forces on the ailerons and of course the wing .

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Give it a rest. The IMC-disoriented pilot plunged, then pulled out when he regained visual reference just a few seconds from impact.

      It was a scenario exceeding design. A glider pilot or C150 spin-meister teleported into the cockpit and declaring "my airplane" at the moment of breakout below the overcast and applying cautious gentle handling would not have resolved the problem in the few seconds that remained.

      Delete
    2. I agree. Personally I am much more interested in what started the accident sequence if it can be determined. For those who have never flown a Mooney, they handle like a truck not a sports car. They are also very low drag and will gain speed rapidly going down hill.

      Delete
    3. I’m not sure how to respond to the comm by that a Mooney handles like a truck not a sports car. I have a Mooney and there is no wheeled vehicle comparison. I’ve flown cessnas, pipers, and a few others and the Mooney is the best flying, crisp, fast, with good slow flight characteristics. So comparing truck to sports car doesn’t make sense. Anyways, never been in the situation as this pilot and never had to pull for my life, so no reference to what he experienced. I had heard you can’t break a Mooney but I’m sure that is in normal to somewhat high speed scenarios.

      Delete
  25. I sold that airplane new. Early in its life it sustained major damage requiring return on trailer to factory. The entire tail assembly was replace. I would imagine that is a contributing factor in break up.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The new tail assembly wasn't on the bird for the early in life damage event. No "left over" compromised structural integrity was present within that new tail assembly.

      Have to wait for NTSB structural metallurgy analysis of the wing remnants to learn whether "left over" damage from the early in life event compromised the one piece wing.

      Delete
    2. That is an interesting bit of information that does not appear in the FAA or NTSB record. It only shows two incidents. The plane had a broken valve in February 1991. The engine was overhauled under warranty. And in June 2014 the propeller governor idler gear shaft blew out the front of the crankcase while at 5,500 ft and 5 miles from the takeoff airport. Oil covered the windscreen. The plane successfully landed on the runway but overran onto the grass. The only reported damage was to the engine.

      Can you provide more detail related to the event that you reference? Was it a hangar incident? Seems odd that it was not reported especially if the factory was involved. It looks like it was in Illinois and Nevada in the early parts of its life but the records may not be complete. That is a long truck haul of the plane to Kerrville, TX. I wonder why they didn't just ship a tail to the closest Mooney Service Center.

      Delete
  26. Not seeing anything in the aviation databases showing earlier damage on N9156Z

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You will not see it in the "aviation bases". It was prior to any registration of the aircraft. It was still the property of the manufacturer.

      Delete
    2. Have you provided this information to the NTSB?

      Delete
    3. Also was this the result of a bad landing or inflight incident that might have stressed other parts of the plane? Or something that happened in a hangar or sitting on the ramp? - hit by a folding door or truck?

      Delete
  27. Twenty eight years of usage and annual inspections on N9156Z makes it doubtful that the needlessly vague "early in its life" story of damage will turn out to be anything more than a troll post.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. NTSB and FAA investigators come here on a daily basis - they review the postings & commentary information and determine whether it has legitimate lead value. Information is then forwarded to the appropriate entity for handling.

      Delete
    2. Strange... The FAA lists it as a 1992 model with an A/W date of 10/06/1992
      How did it have engine trouble in Feb 1991 over a year and a half earlier?
      Something doesn't seem to line up with the dates.

      https://registry.faa.gov/AircraftInquiry/Search/NNumberResult?nNumberTxt=9156Z

      Here is a Mooney model chronology from 1948-2006. Scroll down to 1992 and this serial # (27-0142) falls between 27-0126 - 27-0146 for 1992

      http://www.mooneyevents.com/chrono.htm

      Delete
    3. That 1991 broken valve date must be a typo, it was 1994, easy to check using the link below, query on 9156Z and scroll to the end.

      http://www.aviationdb.com/Aviation/AircraftQuery.shtm

      Delete
    4. Yes - Typo - should have been February 28, 1994 - good catch. It broke part of a valve face when it was a little over 2 years old. The database says it was given a top overhaul with new cylinders under warranty.

      Delete
    5. Judging from the lack of replies from the originator of the needlessly vague "early in its life" story of damage, the unverified story turned out to be a troll post after all, just as expected.

      Learn to spot the "tells". Vague info, replies stop coming when asked for more details...

      Delete
  28. Factory tour photos in links below provide a look at the wing spar (joined at center), steel cage and many other details.

    Looking at the spar center join reinforcements, it's not surprising that wing fold from forces exceeding design would be located at the intersection with the steel fuselage frame.

    2012 Factory tour:
    http://www.davemorris.com/PhotoViewer.cfm?Subdirectory=Mooney%20Factory%20Tour

    2016 Factory tour:
    https://www.flyingmag.com/photos-mooney-factory-tour/

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Date correction: The 2012 factory tour was actually 2006, based on file folder "15 years ago" and 2006 production date of Acclaim N311TN captioned as being test flown without paint. The incorrect 2012 date came from the photo last edit date in properties.

      Delete
  29. Here's another bit of Mooney history. The "TLS" in the model # actually stands for
    "Turbo-Lycoming Sabre". It was converted in 1996 to the Lycoming TIO-540-AF1B
    Because of upper engine oiling issues with the TIO-540-AF1. After the engine change, it was called the "TLS Bravo" then, in 1998, it was renamed just "Bravo"

    Here's a Mooney Production spreadsheet and Historical Map with production numbers

    http://www.mooneyltd.com/downloads/Product_History_Chart.pdf

    More history of the M20 Series

    http://web.archive.org/web/20021004071645/mooneyltd.com/product_history.html

    ReplyDelete
  30. Sorry, but the link I posted above for the spreadsheet doesn't seem to work. Try this one. The 2nd link about history works though.

    http://web.archive.org/web/20021004071645/mooneyltd.com/downloads/Product_History_Chart.pdf

    ReplyDelete
  31. Spend the money for a Garmin with a blue button. How much are the lives of you and your family worth?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. "So, what exactly does the blue button do? In short, it puts the blue side — the sky — up. When the level mode button is activated in-flight, the autopilot automatically engages and works to return the aircraft to a straight-and-level condition."

      Delete
  32. Preliminary report is out. Regarding the left elevator and horizontal stab that came off before impact, the report says the three outboard hinge blocks of the left elevator remained attached to the left horizontal stabilizer, with the rivets pulled out and sheared off the elevator.

    Hard pullup done at high speed seems to be the case.

    https://data.ntsb.gov/carol-repgen/api/Aviation/ReportMain/GenerateNewestReport/103651/pdf

    ReplyDelete