Sunday, December 05, 2021

Runway Excursion: Piper PA-28-151, N181BW; accident occurred July 03, 2021 at Nuggs Flying M Airport (TE68), Pottsboro, Grayson County, Texas

Aviation Accident Factual 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; Irving, Texas

Investigation Docket - National Transportation Safety Board:

Location: Pottsboro, Texas
Accident Number: CEN21LA306
Date and Time: July 3, 2021, 12:30 Local 
Registration: N181BW
Aircraft: Piper PA-28-151 
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Runway excursion 
Injuries: 2 None
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General aviation - Personal

Factual Information

On July 3, 2021, about 1230 central daylight time, a Piper, PA-28-151 airplane, N181BW, was substantially damaged when it was involved in an accident near Pottsboro, Texas. The pilot and passenger were not injured. The airplane was operated as a Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 personal flight.

The pilot’s initial report after the accident indicated that she conducted a preflight inspection, calculated the [airplane’s] performance, and obtained the weather information from a nearby airport.

During the takeoff roll, the engine instruments “were in the green”, but the airplane did not gain airspeed as expected. The pilot realized the airplane wasn’t going to clear the trees, so she attempted to abort the takeoff. However, the airplane continued past the end of the runway and impacted several small trees before coming to a stop.

An examination by the responding Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) revealed that the runway surface was very rough, and the grass height was “okay.” The FAA noted that the right wing had separated from the fuselage and the left wing had substantial damage about mid-span, after impact with a tree.

In subsequent statements, the pilot added that she planned to complete a combined short and soft field takeoff. She started the takeoff roll with full power but did not get the power she was used to. She added it was loud and bumpy on the grass runway and she “wasn’t sure if the engine was making any sounds or sputtering.” She added that they lifted off in ground effect but had a decrease in power and landed back on the ground past the end of the runway.

A review of the airplane’s performance tables indicated the takeoff roll could be 1,400 to 1,800 ft on a paved, level runway at maximum gross weight. The handbook’s data did not contain correction factors for grass or rough surface runway. Additionally, the airplane was modified with an O-360 engine. Revised performance tables for the airplane with the engine modification were not available.

Runway information from lists the runway as orientated 18-36, turf, and 2,375 feet long by 75 feet wide, at an estimated altitude of 725 feet.

The airplane was equipped with a J.P. Instruments, Inc EDM-900 engine monitor. Data extracted from the unit revealed one file dated July 3, 2021, that corresponded with the accident flight for 0.17 hour. A review of the data noted that the engine rpm increased from about 2,260 to 2,330 for a period of 30 seconds before a sudden drop in engine rpm and just before the data ended.

An engine examination and test run were conducted on August 23, 2021. The fuselage, minus the wings, was strapped down to a trailer. The engine cowling had been previously removed, and a visual inspection of the engine did not reveal any abnormities. A fuel canister was connected to the airplane’s fuel line near the engine’s electric fuel pump. The engine started without hesitation or delay and was
then warmed up at idle rpm. The throttle was advanced, a magneto check was completed, and carburetor heat was applied; no anomalies were noted. Full throttle was then applied, and the engine responded accordingly. When the engine mixture was leaned, a slight rpm increase was observed.

After the test run, the corresponding data was again extracted from the engine monitor. A review of the data noted the maximum engine rpm increased during the test from about 2,200 rpm to a high of 2,323 rpm, before the throttle was reduced. No abnormalities were noted during the engine test and the engine appeared to make rated power.

Pilot Information

Certificate: Commercial; Flight instructor 
Age: 26
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:
Instructor Rating(s): Airplane multi-engine; Airplane single-engine
Toxicology Performed:
Medical Certification: Class 1 Without waivers/limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: July 11, 2019
Occupational Pilot: Yes 
Last Flight Review or Equivalent: October 11, 2019
Flight Time: 1154.9 hours (Total, all aircraft), 850 hours (Total, this make and model)

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Piper 
Registration: N181BW
Model/Series: PA-28-151 
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 1976 
Amateur Built:
Airworthiness Certificate: Normal 
Serial Number: 28-7615334
Landing Gear Type: Tricycle 
Seats: 4
Date/Type of Last Inspection: December 3, 2020 Annual 
Certified Max Gross Wt.:
Time Since Last Inspection: 
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 5560.7 Hrs as of last inspection
Engine Manufacturer: Lycoming
ELT: Installed, activated, did not aid in locating accident
Engine Model/Series: O-360
Registered Owner: 
Rated Power: 180
Operator: On file
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: Visual (VMC) 
Condition of Light: Day
Observation Facility, Elevation: KGYI,749 ft msl 
Distance from Accident Site: 3 Nautical Miles
Observation Time: 11:50 Local 
Direction from Accident Site: 171°
Lowest Cloud Condition: 
Visibility: 10 miles
Lowest Ceiling: Overcast / 6000 ft AGL
Visibility (RVR):
Wind Speed/Gusts: 7 knots / 
Turbulence Type Forecast/Actual:  /
Wind Direction: 100° 
Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual:  /
Altimeter Setting: 30.07 inches Hg
Temperature/Dew Point: 26°C / 17°C
Precipitation and Obscuration: No Obscuration; No Precipitation
Departure Point: Pottsboro, TX
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Destination: Denison, TX (KGYI) 
Type of Clearance: None
Departure Time: 
Type of Airspace:

Airport Information

Airport: Nuggs Flying M Airport TE68 
Runway Surface Type: Grass/turf
Airport Elevation: 725 ft msl 
Runway Surface Condition: Rough
Runway Used: 18-36 
IFR Approach: None
Runway Length/Width: 2375 ft / 75 ft
VFR Approach/Landing: None

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 None 
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: 1 None
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: 
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 2 None 
Latitude, Longitude: 33.767156,-96.684078 (est)

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