Tuesday, October 05, 2021

Sonerai II, N9115Y: Accident occurred October 03, 2021 at Minot International Airport (KMOT), Ward County, North Dakota

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 did not travel to the scene of this accident. 

Additional Participating Entity:
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Fargo, North Dakota

Location: Minot, North Dakota
Accident Number: CEN22LA007
Date and Time: October 3, 2021, 16:20 Local 
Registration: N9115Y
Aircraft: Soneral L2
Injuries: 1 Minor
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General aviation - Personal

On October 3, 2021, about 1620 central daylight time, a Soneral L2 airplane, N9115Y, sustained substantial damage when it was involved in an accident near Minot, North Dakota. The pilot sustained minor injuries. The flight was conducted under the provisions of Title14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91.

The pilot stated that he prepared for his first flight in the recently acquired airplane. He conducted a preflight, started the engine, and taxied to runway 31 for takeoff at Minot International Airport (MOT). As the airplane climbed into the traffic pattern, the pilot noticed that the engine temperature was high, just under redline. He reduced engine power and the temperature came back to normal. On the downwind, he leveled the airplane and prepared for a landing. On final approach, he decided that he was not as stable as he would have liked and decided to execute a go-around.

During the go-around, the engine did not seem to have to have much power, and the pilot saw what appeared to be engine oil on the windscreen which obscured his visibility. The pilot then saw the engine temperature gauge rise to over 500-degrees. Oil pressure was in the normal range. The pilot decided to land the airplane as soon as possible, executed an abbreviated approach, and lined up to land on runway 31. On final approach, a few feet from touchdown, the airplane stalled. The airplane dropped to the runway and bounced a few times. The pilot tried to recover by applying power, but the engine did not seem to have enough power. The airplane listed to the right and veered off the runway, resulting to structural damage to the forward part of the fuselage and empennage.

The airplane was examined at the accident site. The two blades of the wooden propeller were shattered, consistent with rotation/power at impact. The propeller was separated from crankshaft and the forward part of the crankshaft was fractured with torsion signatures. The Volkswagon, model 2175CC engine was rotated, and drive continuity was confirmed. Throttle cables were connected and had continuity from the cockpit to engine. Slight oil streaks were present on top of the engine cowl, but source of the oil leak could not be confirmed.

After the accident, the pilot stated that since it was his first flight in the airplane, he was not familiar with its characteristics and performance. Airplane logbooks provided by the pilot showed that the airplane’s last flight was conducted in January of 1995. Additional entries showed that the airplane was ground taxi-tested several times, but not flown. The most recent condition inspection was completed on September 1, 2021, during which, the airplane’s engine was operated for about three hours (ground run) with no anomalies.

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Soneral 
Registration: N9115Y
Model/Series: L2
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Amateur Built: Yes
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None
Operator Designator Code:

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: VMC
Condition of Light: Day
Observation Facility, Elevation: KMOT,1714 ft msl 
Observation Time: 16:40 Local
Distance from Accident Site: 0 Nautical Miles
Temperature/Dew Point: 29°C /1°C
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: 14 knots / , 260°
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility: 10 miles
Altimeter Setting: 29.87 inches Hg 
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Departure Point: Minot, ND
Destination: Minot, ND

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Minor 
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: 
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 1 Minor
Latitude, Longitude: 48.257639,-101.27802 (est)

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