Sunday, May 02, 2021

Cessna T210M Turbo Centurion, N1215M: Fatal accident occurred May 02, 2021 and Accident occurred April 05, 2017

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; Des Moines, Iowa
Textron Aviation; Wichita, Kansas


Location: Oxford, IA 
Accident Number: CEN21FA207
Date & Time: May 2, 2021, 15:52 Local
Registration: N1215M
Aircraft: Cessna T210M
Injuries: 1 Fatal
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General aviation - Personal

On May 2, 2021, at 1552 central daylight time, a Cessna T210M airplane, N1215M, was destroyed when it was involved in an accident near Oxford, Iowa. The pilot was fatally injured. The airplane was operated as a Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 personal flight. 

According to preliminary air traffic control information, the pilot contacted the Eastern Iowa Airport (CID), Cedar Rapids, Iowa, control tower and reported that he was going to perform touch and go maneuvers at Green Castle Airport (IA24), Oxford, Iowa, which was located about 8 miles south of CID.

A witness, who was located adjacent to the runway at IA24, reported the airplane entered a left traffic pattern for runway 15 (4,000 ft x 60 ft). After touchdown, the airplane bounced, and the right wing lifted up to an estimated 45° angle. The airplane’s wings then leveled, and the airplane bounced a second time. The airplane landed, exited the runway surface to the left, and entered a harvested corn field. The witness then heard the engine rpm increase to full power, and the airplane attempted to take off from the field. The airplane struck a power pole and power line near the corner of the harvested corn field. Subsequently, the airplane impacted terrain and a postaccident fire ensued. The witness estimated the winds to be from the west about 25 to 30 knots.

The airplane wreckage was located in a harvested corn field about 750 ft east from the end of runway 15. Landing gear tire marks, consistent with the accident airplane’s landing gear, were noted in the harvested corn field adjacent to the runway and measured about 1,200 ft in length. The distance from the end of the tire marks to the power pole/power line was about 300 ft. The image in figure 1 shows the end of runway 15, tire marks in the field, power lines, and accident 
site with the postaccident fire damage.

Figure 1. Image showing the end of runway 15, tire marks in the field, power lines, and accident site with the postaccident fire damage.


A separated outboard section of the left wing was located between the power pole and main wreckage. The main wreckage, which was consumed by fire, consisted of the fuselage, empennage, engine, and propeller assembly. The propeller assembly was separated from the engine crankshaft and found embedded in the soft terrain. Flight control continuity was established to all flight control surfaces and cockpit flight controls.

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Cessna 
Registration: N1215M
Model/Series: T210M
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Amateur Built: No
Operator:
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: KCID,868 ft msl
Observation Time: 15:52 Local
Distance from Accident Site: 8 Nautical Miles
Temperature/Dew Point: 29°C /14°C
Lowest Cloud Condition: 
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: 19 knots / 27 knots, 200°
Lowest Ceiling: 
Visibility: 10 miles
Altimeter Setting: 29.5 inches Hg
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Departure Point: Iowa City, IA 
Destination: Oxford, IA

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Fatal 
Aircraft Damage: Destroyed
Passenger Injuries:
Aircraft Fire: On-ground
Ground Injuries: 
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 1 Fatal
Latitude, Longitude: 41.752565,-91.718851 (est)

Those who may have information that might be relevant to the National Transportation Safety Board investigation may contact them by email eyewitnessreport@ntsb.gov, and any friends and family who want to contact investigators about the accident should email assistance@ntsb.gov.

 
Dr. Dale Bieber

TIFFIN - A University of Iowa doctor and clinical professor was practicing landing and takeoff techniques when he was involved in a fatal plane crash earlier this month.

According to an aviation accident preliminary report from the National Transportation Safety Board, Dr. Dale Bieber, 73, contacted the Eastern Iowa Airport control tower around 3:52 p.m. May 2 and informed personnel there that he was going to perform “touch and go maneuvers” at the Green Castle Airport. In a touch and go landing, the pilot prepares to land, briefly touches down and then takes off without coming to a stop.

The preliminary report states that the witness saw Bieber’s Cessna T210M touchdown and bounce, with the right wing lifting up to “an estimated 45 degree angle.” Bieber leveled the plane and bounced a second time, the witness reported.

Authorities said Bieber landed the plane and exited the runway into a field. The witness reported hearing the engine increase to full power as Bieber attempted to take off from the field.

The report states Bieber’s plane hit a power pole and power line near the corner of the field.

“Subsequently, the airplane impacted terrain and a post accident fire ensued,” the report states.

According to the University of Iowa, Bieber was a clinical professor in the Department of Internal Medicine and internist with University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics since 2007.




The pilot who died in a plane crash in a Tiffin farm field Sunday has been identified as 73-year-old Dale Bieber of Coralville. 

Bieber worked as a doctor and clinical professor of internal medicine at the University of Iowa Hospitals & Clinics and Carver College of Medicine. 

Friends on Facebook circulated a message from Bieber's wife, Carla, who wrote:

"I am comforted only in remembering that he was an amazing, kind man who gave me (and others) so much in his lifetime. I suspect many of you will grieve as I will. He would want us to celebrate him — not be sad for his passing — and I will endeavor to pretend I can do that. God Bless."

Dale Bieber, 73, died in a plane crash near Tiffin on Sunday.

The Johnson County Sheriff's Office responded to the crash at 250th Street and Greencastle Avenue Northwest near Tiffin at around 4 p.m. Sunday. Witnesses called 911 to report an airplane was seen crashing into a farm field near the Green Castle Airport.

The plane crashed under unknown circumstances, according to preliminary information from the Federal Aviation Administration. The Cessna T210M Turbo Centurion was destroyed.

Bieber was the only one on board.

In a video posted on the UIHC web page, Bieber said he was originally from Pennsylvania but lived in Nigeria until he was 14. His parents were missionaries.

Bieber received a masters degree in physiology from Pennsylvania State University and an M.D. from the Penn State College of Medicine. He specialized in internal and geriatric medicine.

Before coming to Iowa, Bieber spent two decades working as a doctor in a town of 500 people in Pennsylvania, he said in the video. 

"It was my dream come true to do what I wanted in a small town," Bieber said in the video. "People in the restaurant would say, 'Hi, doc. How are you doing?' In the grocery store would say, 'What's wrong with my finger here?' It was just a wonderful small town environment to be in."

Bieber said he was a "small-town person in my heart," and while in Pennsylvania, sung in a barbershop chorus and worked as the church choir director.



TIFFIN, Iowa (KWWL) -- The Johnson County Sheriff's Office has identified the victim in a plane crash in rural Tiffin on Sunday afternoon as 73-year-old Dale Bieber of Coralville.

911 calls were received from witnesses stating an airplane was observed near the Greencastle Airport and shortly after the plane crashed into a neighboring farm field.

Bieber was the only occupant of the single-engine aircraft and authorities say he died at the scene.

The Federal Aviation Administration and National Transportation Safety Board are continuing to investigate the incident.

An agent for the National Transportation Safety Board finished a site evaluation Monday and a spokesperson for the agency says preliminary reports indicate the plane crashed while landing at the small private airport.

The Johnson County Sheriff’s Office was assisted by the Iowa State Patrol, North Liberty Police Department, Tiffin Fire Department, Oxford Fire Department, Johnson County Emergency Management, Johnson County Joint Emergency Communications Center, and Johnson County Medical Examiner’s Office.





Johnson County Sheriff's Office
 
On May 2, 2021, at 3:52pm, the Johnson County Sheriff’s Office responded to a plane crash at 250th St & Greencastle Ave NW in rural Tiffin, Iowa.  

911 calls were received from witnesses stating an airplane was observed near the Green Castle Airport and shortly after the plane crashed into a neighboring farm field. 

The pilot of the single-engine aircraft has been confirmed deceased. 

The name of the individual is being withheld until family notification can be completed. 

The cause of the crash is still under investigation.  

The Federal Aviation Administration and National Transportation Safety Board have been notified and will be joining the investigation.

The Johnson County Sheriff’s Office was assisted by the Iowa State Patrol, North Liberty Police Department, Tiffin Fire Department, Oxford Fire Department, Johnson County Emergency Management, and Johnson County Medical Examiner’s Office.






Aviation Accident Final 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; Minneapolis, Minnesota

Investigation Docket - National Transportation Safety Board:


Location: Detroit Lakes, Minnesota 
Accident Number: CEN17LA148
Date & Time: April 5, 2017, 14:10 Local
Registration: N1215M
Aircraft: Cessna T210M 
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Landing gear collapse 
Injuries: 1 None
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General aviation - Positioning

Analysis

The commercial pilot reported that, before the accident flight, the airplane had been experiencing intermittent landing gear problems and that the purpose of the flight was to bring the airplane to a maintenance facility to examine the landing gear system. He added that, before the flight, the landing gear circuit breaker was pulled out "in order to keep the gear in the down position and eliminate the gear warning horn" for the flight. While landing, the pilot noticed that the left wing slightly dropped after touchdown, and the pilot corrected with aileron to maintain the runway centerline. Shortly thereafter, the pilot could feel the right main landing gear (MLG) slowly collapse. The pilot was unable to maintain the airplane on the runway centerline, and the airplane exited the runway surface. The airplane came to rest upright with the right MLG collapsed, and the right horizontal stabilizer was bent.

During a postaccident examination, the landing gear were retracted and extended multiple times. Each gear retraction was normal; however, the gear extension cycles resulted in the left MLG and nose landing gear extending and locking, and the right MLG extending with no movement from the downlock actuator. The actuator was removed for further examination, and it was difficult to move. After removal, the actuator released, and the internal spring mechanism freely moved the actuator. The actuator was disassembled with no internal problems noted.

According to the Pilot's Operating Handbook, Section 3, "Emergency Procedures, Landing Gear Malfunction Procedures," the landing gear pump circuit breaker was to be positioned to the "in" position for all landing gear malfunction scenarios.

Probable Cause and Findings

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be:
The malfunction of the right main landing gear actuator for reasons that could not be determined because postaccident examination revealed no mechanical anomalies that would have precluded normal operation. Contributing to the accident was the improper decision to disengage the landing gear system circuit breaker before the flight, which was contrary to the manufacturer-recommended procedures.

Findings

Aircraft Landing gear actuator - Malfunction
Not determined (general) - Unknown/Not determined
Personnel issues Incorrect action selection - Other
Personnel issues Decision making/judgment - Pilot
Personnel issues Use of policy/procedure - Pilot

Factual Information

On April 5, 2017, at 1410 central daylight time, a Cessna 210M single-engine airplane, N1215M, experienced a right main landing gear collapse at the Detroit Lakes Airport (DTL), Detroit Lakes, Minnesota. The commercial pilot, who was the sole occupant, was not injured, and the airplane sustained substantial damage to the right horizontal stabilizer. The airplane was registered to Great
Plains Leasing, LLC, Dickinson, North Dakota, and operated by a private individual under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 as a positioning flight. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the accident, and a flight plan was not filed. The flight departed the Moorhead Municipal Airport (JKJ), Moorhead, Minnesota, about 1350.

According to the pilot, before the accident flight, the airplane had been experiencing intermittent landing gear problems, and the purpose of the flight was to bring the airplane to a maintenance facility at DTL to examine the landing gear system. Before the flight, the landing gear circuit breaker was pulled out "in order to keep the gear in the down position and eliminate the gear warning horn" for the flight to DTL. While landing at DTL, the pilot noticed the left wing slightly dropped after touchdown, and the pilot corrected with aileron to maintain runway centerline. Shortly thereafter, the pilot could feel the right main landing gear slowly collapse. The pilot was unable to maintain the airplane on runway centerline, and the airplane exited the runway surface. The airplane came to rest upright with the right main landing gear collapsed, and the right horizontal stabilizer was bent.

On April 18, 2017, the airplane was examined by a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) inspector and a mechanic. During the initial examination, the landing gear was retracted and extended multiple times. Each gear retraction was normal, and the gear extension cycle resulted in the left main and nose gear extending and locking, and the right gear extending with no movement from the downlock actuator. After loosening the hydraulic line fittings at the downlock actuator, hydraulic fluid was present at the actuator. The actuator was removed for further examination, and was found difficult to move. According to the inspector, after removal, the actuator released, and the internal spring mechanism freely moved the actuator. The actuator was disassembled with no internal problems noted.

On April 24, 2017, a former pilot of the accident airplane stopped into the FAA office in Fargo, North Dakota, to discuss the accident. According to the pilot, he had previously flown the airplane in September 2016 from DTL to JKJ, and experienced an unsafe gear warning horn and advised the airplane owners. During his landing, he landed with the landing gear pump circuit break in and the gear warning horn functioning. He stated that with the landing gear pump operating (circuit breaker in), the pump pressure on the landing gear actuator held the gear in the "saddle" until the airplane was on the ground. The weight of the wheels would then keep the gear in the down position. To his knowledge, the airplane had been in storage since his flight.

According to the Cessna Pilot's Operating Handbook (POH), Section 3, Emergency Procedures, Landing Gear Malfunction Procedures, all landing gear malfunction scenarios listed in the POH require the landing gear pump circuit breaker to be in the "IN" position.

History of Flight

Landing-flare/touchdown Landing gear collapse (Defining event)

Pilot Information

Certificate: Commercial 
Age: 39, Male
Airplane Rating(s): Single-engine land; Multi-engine land
Seat Occupied: Left
Other Aircraft Rating(s): None 
Restraint Used: Lap only
Instrument Rating(s): Airplane
Second Pilot Present: No
Instructor Rating(s): None
Toxicology Performed: No
Medical Certification: Class 2 Without waivers/limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: July 25, 2016
Occupational Pilot: No
Last Flight Review or Equivalent: July 31, 2016
Flight Time: 1080 hours (Total, all aircraft), 1 hours (Total, this make and model), 300 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft), 64 hours (Last 90 days, all aircraft), 9 hours (Last 30 days, all aircraft), 2 hours (Last 24 hours, all aircraft)

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Cessna 
Registration: N1215M
Model/Series: T210M M 
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 1977
Amateur Built: No
Airworthiness Certificate: Normal 
Serial Number: 21061924
Landing Gear Type: Retractable - Tricycle 
Seats: 5
Date/Type of Last Inspection: August 29, 2016 Annual 
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 3803 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection: 1 Hrs
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 5810 Hrs at time of accident
Engine Manufacturer: CONT MOTOR
ELT: Installed, not activated 
Engine Model/Series: TSIO-520 SER
Registered Owner: 
Rated Power: 300 Horsepower
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: DTL
Distance from Accident Site:
Observation Time: 14:13 Local
Direction from Accident Site:
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Visibility:  10 miles
Lowest Ceiling: None 
Visibility (RVR):
Wind Speed/Gusts: 12 knots / 15 knots 
Turbulence Type Forecast/Actual:  / None
Wind Direction: 350°
Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual:  /
Altimeter Setting: 30.05 inches Hg
Temperature/Dew Point: 8°C / -2°C
Precipitation and Obscuration: No Obscuration; No Precipitation
Departure Point: Moorhead, MN (JKJ) 
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Destination: Detroit Lakes, MN (DTL) 
Type of Clearance: None
Departure Time: 13:50 Local
Type of Airspace: Class E

Airport Information

Airport: Detroit Lakes Airport DTL 
Runway Surface Type: Asphalt
Airport Elevation: 1397 ft msl 
Runway Surface Condition: Dry
Runway Used: 31 IFR
Approach: None
Runway Length/Width: 4500 ft / 75 ft 
VFR Approach/Landing: Full stop; Traffic pattern

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 None 
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: 
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A 
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 1 None 
Latitude, Longitude: 46.825279,-95.885559(est)

Glasair Sportsman GS-2, N899TR: Incident occurred May 02, 2021 at Williamsburg Jamestown Airport (KJGG), James City County, Virginia

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Richmond, Virginia

Aircraft landed and the nose gear collapsed.


Date: 02-MAY-21
Time: 13:51:00Z
Regis#: N899TR
Aircraft Make: GLASAIR
Aircraft Model: GS-2 SPORTSMAN
Event Type: INCIDENT
Highest Injury: NONE
Aircraft Missing: No
Damage: UNKNOWN
Activity: PERSONAL
Flight Phase: LANDING (LDG)
Operation: 91
City: WILLIAMSBURG
State: VIRGINIA


JAMES CITY COUNTY, Virginia  — On Sunday, May 2 at approximately 10:00 a.m., Virginia State Police (VSP) received a call that a plane crashed at Williamsburg-Jamestown Airport (WJA).

Troopers responded to find that a Glasair Sportsman GS-2 aircraft crashed at the airport, which is located at 100 Marclay Drive in Williamsburg.

Charly Rogers of WJA said that the pilot took off from the airport, realized that there was an issue with the aircraft and turned back around. He said that the pilot was the only person in the plane.

WJA is reporting that there were no injuries nor fire related to this crash and that the runway has since been cleared.

VSP did not have any additional details to add to the information already provided by WJA.

Cirrus SR22 GTS G5 Platinum, N78EM: Incident occurred May 02, 2021 at Hartford-Brainard Airport (KHFD), Hartford County, Connecticut

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Bradley 

Aircraft landed and veered off runway.

MD Air LLC

Date: 02-MAY-21
Time: 18:00:00Z
Regis#: N78EM
Aircraft Make: CIRRUS
Aircraft Model: SR22
Event Type: INCIDENT
Highest Injury: NONE
Aircraft Missing: No
Damage: UNKNOWN
Activity: PERSONAL
Flight Phase: LANDING (LDG)
Operation: 91
City: HARTFORD
State: CONNECTICUT



Hartford-Brainard Airport has reopened after an incident involving a private plane on Sunday afternoon, according to Connecticut Airport Authority officials.

Authorities said there was an incident involving a private, single-engine aircraft at the airport around 1:45 p.m.

The Federal Aviation Administration said a Cirrus SR22 veered off the runway after landing at the airport.

Four people were on board at the time.

The registered owner of the plane is Md Air LLC out of Enfield. The company is described as providing heating and air conditioning services.

No injuries were reported in the incident.

The airport reopened in the early evening on Sunday.

The FAA said they are investigating.


HARTFORD, Connecticut. — Hartford-Brainard Airport was closed for a short time this afternoon after a plane went off the runway during landing. 

The Connecticut Airport Authority says the plane was a single-engine aircraft, and there were no reported injuries after it landed around 1:40 p.m. Sunday. The airport was closed but reopened some time before 4:45 p.m. 

The Hartford Fire Department says they responded and secured the plane; they found no fuel leak and soon left the scene. 

No word yet on what exactly caused the mishap. 

Beechcraft A36 Bonanza, N125WC: Fatal accident occurred May 01, 2021 near Lakeland Linder International Airport (KLAL), Polk County, Florida

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 Entities:
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Orlando, Florida
Textron Aviation; Wichita, Kansas 

Location: Lakeland, FL
Accident Number: ERA21LA201
Date & Time: May 1, 2021, 14:28 Local
Registration: N125WC
Aircraft: Beech A36 Injuries: 1 Fatal, 1 Serious
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General aviation - Personal

On May 1, 2021, about 1428 eastern daylight time, a Beech A36, N125WC, was destroyed when it was involved in an accident near Lakeland, Florida. The private pilot was seriously injured, and the pilotrated passenger was fatally injured. The airplane was operated as a Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 personal flight.

According to Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast (ADS-B) data, earlier on the day of the accident the airplane flew to several airports before arriving at Bartow Executive Airport (BOW), Bartow, Florida. The accident flight departed BOW about 1420 and proceeded toward Lakeland Linder International Airport (LAL), Lakeland, Florida.

According to recorded air traffic control communications with the LAL air traffic control tower, the flight was instructed by the local controller to join the right downwind leg of the airport traffic pattern for runway 9 at or above 1,500 ft mean sea level (msl). The local controller observed the airplane descending to 800 ft msl and informed the pilot that the flight needed to be at or above 1,500 ft msl, and to turn southbound. An occupant of the airplane advised the controller of an engine failure. The airplane was cleared to land on runway 5, and subsequently cleared to land on runway 27, after a transport category airplane that was on approach to runway 9 was instructed to go-around; however, the pilot or passenger advised that the airplane could not reach the runway.

According to ADS-B data between 1423:38 and 1425:37 when the flight was about 4 nautical miles east-southeast from the approach end of runway 27 at LAL, the airplane flew on a westerly direction consistent with entering the downwind leg of the airport traffic pattern for runway 9. After 1425:37, the airplane turned slightly to the right, then again proceeded briefly on a westerly direction. At 1426:25, the airplane turned to the right onto a west-northwesterly direction toward the approach end of runway 27 until 1427:53, at which time, when the flight was about .80 nautical mile and 101° from the approach end of runway 27, the airplane turned right to a north-northwesterly direction.

The airplane’s last ADS-B target at was located about .68 nautical mile and 092° from the approach end of runway 27 at LAL.

The airplane impacted a tree about 12 ft above ground level, then impacted a trailer and the ground. A postcrash fire nearly consumed the cockpit and cabin. The airplane was recovered for further examination of the airframe and engine.

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Beech 
Registration: N125WC
Model/Series: A36 
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: VMC
Condition of Light: Day
Observation Facility, Elevation: KLAL,142 ft msl 
Observation Time: 13:45 Local
Distance from Accident Site: 3 Nautical Miles
Temperature/Dew Point: 28°C /19°C
Lowest Cloud Condition: Scattered / 4300 ft AGL
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: / ,
Lowest Ceiling: None 
Visibility: 10 miles
Altimeter Setting: 30.02 inches Hg 
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Departure Point: Bartow, FL (BOW)
Destination: Lakeland, FL

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Serious
Aircraft Damage: Destroyed
Passenger Injuries: 1 Fatal 
Aircraft Fire: On-ground
Ground Injuries: N/A 
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 1 Fatal, 1 Serious
Latitude, Longitude: 27.989563,-81.99518 (est)

Those who may have information that might be relevant to the National Transportation Safety Board investigation may contact them by email eyewitnessreport@ntsb.gov, and any friends and family who want to contact investigators about the accident should email assistance@ntsb.gov.

Robinson R44 Raven I, N4528T: Fatal accident occurred May 02, 2021 in Wingate, Union County, North Carolina

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. 

Additional Participating Entities:
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Charlotte, North Carolina
Robinson Helicopters; Torrance, California 
Lycoming Engine; Williamsport, Pennsylvania  

Kritter Cropdusting Inc


Location: Wingate, NC
Accident Number: ERA21FA200
Date & Time: May 2, 2021, 13:18 Local 
Registration: N4528T
Aircraft: ROBINSON HELICOPTER R44 
Injuries: 1 Fatal
Flight Conducted Under: Part 137: Agricultural

On May 2, 2021, at 1318 eastern daylight time, a Robinson R-44 helicopter, N4528T, was substantially damaged when it was involved in an accident near Wingate, North Carolina. The pilot was fatally injured. The helicopter was being operated as a Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 137 aerial application flight.

The commercial pilot was spraying fungicide on a wheat field when the accident occurred. According to several witnesses, this was the first time they had observed the northwest portion of the field, which contained multiple power lines, being sprayed via aerial application. The helicopter had been applying fungicide all morning, operating about 15 ft above the 3-ft-tall wheat during the spraying operation. The pilot’s wife reported that after landing, having lunch and loading more fungicide, the pilot took off to begin spraying where he left off. Images recovered from a GPS application on the pilot’s tablet computer showed that the helicopter took off, flew to where the pilot left off, and completed its first pass in a northerly heading. The helicopter then turned and flew over the field on a southerly heading. The data correlated to the helicopter’s flight track ended in the vicinity of where the helicopter’s main wreckage came to rest.

Witnesses in a nearby home reported that they heard a loud noise and simultaneously lost electricity to their home. They then looked out their window and saw the helicopter as it descended in a nose-down attitude before it impacted the field in the vicinity of the power lines. One of the witnesses stated that it appeared as though the helicopter became entangled in the wires before it descended nose-first into the ground.

The helicopter impacted and severed an energized wire, also known as a "primary wire" that was oriented about 228° magnetic and measured about 29 ft above ground level at its lowest point over the wheat field. The wire spanned about 345 ft between two utility poles, 264 ft of that span over the wheat field. Two additional power lines spanned other portions of this northwesterly portion of the field. 

The helicopter came to rest on its left side. The fuselage was crushed and deformed aft. The tail boom remained attached to the main fuselage; however, the empennage, composed of the upper and lower vertical stabilizers, horizontal stabilizer, the tail rotor and its gearbox, were separated from the tail boom. The windscreen and door windows were separated from the fuselage and fragmented. Both main rotor blades remained attached to the hub and were whole from root to tip. One blade was bent downwards about 2 ft outboard of the blade grip, and the other was bent downward and in a U-shape. The agricultural hopper remained partially attached to the fuselage. It was breached and its lower side was crush-damaged. The engine compartment and engine remained intact.

The empennage was located 99 ft and 336° from the main wreckage. (See Figure 1) The lower vertical stabilizer sustained trailing edge impact and semi-circular crush damage just below the horizontal stabilizer. The tail rotor gearbox was intact but separated from its airframe mount and was located about 112 ft and 208° from the main wreckage. The tail rotor hub remained attached to the tail rotor gearbox output shaft and portions of the two tail rotor blades remained attached to the hub. One tail rotor blade was missing about 5 inches of its tip end and the other tail rotor blade was missing about 2 ft of its outboard span. One of these sections was not recovered. The leading edges of both tail rotor blades exhibited impact damage. A fractured segment of one of the tail rotor blades, measuring about 18 inches in length, was located 170 ft and 44° from the main wreckage. The tip portion of one of the fractured tail rotor blades, measuring about 5 inches, was located 119 ft and 3° from the main wreckage. The tip portion exhibited impact scars consistent with a wire strike as well as impact with the tail rotor guard.


Charlotte-Monroe Executive Airport (EQY) was located about 12 miles northwest of the accident site. At 1253, the reported weather included scattered clouds at 3,800 ft. A review of astronomical data from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration revealed that at the time of the accident, the sun was located at an azimuth of about 180° and an elevation of about 71°.

The wreckage was retained for further examination.

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: ROBINSON HELICOPTER
Registration: N4528T
Model/Series: R44
Aircraft Category: Helicopter
Amateur Built: No
Operator: 
Operating Certificate(s) Held: Agricultural aircraft (137)
Operator Designator Code: 

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: VMC 
Condition of Light: Day
Observation Facility, Elevation: KEQY,679 ft msl 
Observation Time: 12:53 Local
Distance from Accident Site: 12 Nautical Miles
Temperature/Dew Point: 25°C /15°C
Lowest Cloud Condition: Scattered / 3800 ft AGL
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: 8 knots / 15 knots, 210°
Lowest Ceiling: 
Visibility: 10 miles
Altimeter Setting: 30.02 inches Hg 
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Departure Point: Wingate, NC 
Destination: Wingate, NC

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Fatal 
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: 
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: 
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 1 Fatal
Latitude, Longitude: 34.882269,-80.435991

Those who may have information that might be relevant to the National Transportation Safety Board investigation may contact them by email eyewitnessreport@ntsb.gov, and any friends and family who want to contact investigators about the accident should email assistance@ntsb.gov.

Aerodynamic Stall / Spin: Cessna 172N Skyhawk, N734QQ; accident occurred May 02, 2018 in Port Angeles, Washington







Aviation Accident Final 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; Seattle, Washington 

Investigation Docket - National Transportation Safety Board:


Location: Port Angeles, Washington
Accident Number: GAA18CA248
Date & Time: May 2, 2018, 08:00 Local 
Registration: N734QQ
Aircraft: Cessna 172 
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Aerodynamic stall/spin 
Injuries: 1 Minor
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General aviation - Positioning

Analysis

The pilot reported that, during a cross-country flight over mountainous terrain, he had a tailwind and allowed the airplane to get too close to terrain. He initiated a right turn to avoid rising terrain, but the terrain was "getting close very quickly." The pilot increased the bank angle, and the nose dropped. The pilot then applied forward pressure on the yoke, and full throttle had already been applied. The airplane stalled and then impacted terrain. Both wings and the fuselage sustained substantial damage.

In the recommendation section of the National Transportation Safety Board Pilot Aviation Accident Report, the pilot reported that his decision to delay the turn away from rising terrain was impulsive and the main reason for this accident.

The pilot reported that there were no mechanical malfunctions or failures 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 exceedance of the airplane's critical angle of attack during a turn away from terrain, which resulted in an accelerated stall. Contributing to the accident was the pilot's decision to delay the turn to avoid terrain. 

Findings

Personnel issues Aircraft control - Pilot
Aircraft Angle of attack - Capability exceeded
Environmental issues Mountainous/hilly terrain - Effect on operation
Aircraft Lateral/bank control - Not attained/maintained
Personnel issues Decision making/judgment - Pilot
Personnel issues Delayed action - Pilot

Factual Information

History of Flight

Maneuvering-low-alt flying Aerodynamic stall/spin (Defining event)
Maneuvering-low-alt flying Collision with terr/obj (non-CFIT)

Pilot Information

Certificate: Commercial; Flight instructor
Age: 23, Male
Airplane Rating(s): Single-engine land; Multi-engine land
Seat Occupied: Left
Other Aircraft Rating(s): None
Restraint Used: 3-point
Instrument Rating(s): Airplane
Second Pilot Present: No
Instructor Rating(s): Airplane single-engine
Toxicology Performed: No
Medical Certification: Class 2 Without waivers/limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: April 5, 2018
Occupational Pilot: Yes 
Last Flight Review or Equivalent: April 14, 2018
Flight Time: (Estimated) 1390 hours (Total, all aircraft), 1280 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft), 235 hours (Last 90 days, all aircraft), 87 hours (Last 30 days, all aircraft), 6 hours (Last 24 hours, all aircraft)

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Cessna 
Registration: N734QQ
Model/Series: 172 N 
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 1977 
Amateur Built: No
Airworthiness Certificate: Normal
Serial Number: 17269034
Landing Gear Type: Tricycle
Seats: 2
Date/Type of Last Inspection: April 24, 2018 Continuous airworthiness
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 2400 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection: 
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 22574 Hrs as of last inspection
Engine Manufacturer: LYCOMING
ELT: C126 installed, activated, aided in locating accident
Engine Model/Series: O-320-D2G
Registered Owner: 
Rated Power: 160 Horsepower
Operator: On file 
Operating Certificate(s) Held: On-demand air taxi (135)

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: Visual (VMC) 
Condition of Light: Day
Observation Facility, Elevation: KPWT,444 ft msl
Distance from Accident Site: 22 Nautical Miles
Observation Time: 14:56 Local
Direction from Accident Site: 108°
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Visibility 10 miles
Lowest Ceiling: None 
Visibility (RVR):
Wind Speed/Gusts: / Turbulence Type Forecast/Actual:  / None
Wind Direction:
Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual:  / N/A
Altimeter Setting: 30.13 inches Hg 
Temperature/Dew Point: 10°C / 7°C
Precipitation and Obscuration: No Obscuration; No Precipitation
Departure Point: PORT ANGELES, WA (CLM)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Destination: Shelton, WA (SHN)
Type of Clearance: None
Departure Time: 07:45 Local 
Type of Airspace: Class G

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Minor 
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries:
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A 
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 1 Minor 
Latitude, Longitude: 47.598056,-123.276107(est)

Flight Control System Malfunction / Failure: Robinson R22 Mariner, N923SM; accident occurred May 02, 2018 in Panama City, Florida







Aviation Accident Final 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; Vestavia Hills, Alabama

Investigation Docket - National Transportation Safety Board:


Location: Panama City, FL
Accident Number: ERA18LA140
Date & Time: 05/02/2018, 1000 CDT
Registration: N923SM
Aircraft: ROBINSON R22
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Flight control sys malf/fail
Injuries: 1 Minor
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Positioning 

Analysis 

The float-equipped helicopter was in cruise flight at an airspeed of 80 knots and an altitude of 800 ft mean sea level when it slowly started losing airspeed. The commercial pilot responded by pushing the cyclic control forward, but the airspeed continued to decrease, and the helicopter began to lose altitude. The pilot continued to push the cyclic forward until it contacted the control stop; he then realized that he had no cyclic control authority. The helicopter descended with no forward airspeed until it impacted the water. The helicopter floated briefly until waves struck its side and it rolled inverted. Postaccident examination of the helicopter revealed that the main rotor blades were deformed, the fuselage was substantially damaged, and the tail boom was partially separated. Further, the ropes used to tie down the helicopter’s main rotor blades were  found wrapped around the rotor head swashplate and pitch control rods.

Before the flight, the pilot conducted a preflight inspection of the helicopter, which would have included removing the rotor blade tie-down ropes and associated socks that cover the rotor blade tips and storing them under the cockpit seat. However, because the ropes were found wrapped around the swashplate and pitch control rods, it is likely that the tie-down ropes were not properly removed and secured and, at some point during the flight, became entangled with the swashplate and pitch control rods, which prevented the pilot from being able to effectively control the pitch of the helicopter.

Probable Cause and Findings

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be:
The pilot's failure to properly remove and secure the tie-down ropes during the preflight inspection, which resulted in the ropes becoming entangled in the rotor head swashplate and pitch control rods during flight and the subsequent loss of pitch control. 

Findings

Personnel issues Incomplete action - Pilot 
Aircraft Pitch control - Attain/maintain not possible 
Personnel issues Preflight inspection - Pilot 
Environmental issues  Water - Contributed to outcome

Factual Information

On May 2, 2018, about 1000 central daylight time, a Robinson R-22 Mariner helicopter, N923SM, operated by N923SM LLC., was substantially damaged during a forced landing near Panama City Beach, Florida. The commercial pilot received minor injuries. The flight was operated in accordance with Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 as a positioning flight. Visual meteorological conditions (VMC) prevailed and no flight plan was filed for the flight that departed Perry-Foley Airport (40J) Perry, Florida at 0830, that was destined for Destin Executive Airport (DTS), Destin, Florida.

The pilot reported that about 90 minutes after departing 40J, while in cruise flight at 80 kts and 800 ft mean sea level (msl), the helicopter slowly started losing airspeed; he pushed the cyclic forward, but the airspeed kept decreasing and the helicopter was beginning to lose altitude. He continued to push the cyclic forward until it hit the stop and then realized he had no cyclic authority. The pilot stated there was no forward airspeed and the helicopter continued to descend until it impacted the water with nearly zero forward airspeed and little flare. The helicopter floated briefly until waves struck the side of it and it turned inverted.

Prior to the flight, the pilot was conducting a preflight inspection, which included removal and storage of the blade tie down ropes and associated "socks" that cover the rotor blade tips. During this procedure, the pilot removed the tie down ropes and thought he placed them under the left cockpit seat storage container. In addition, the flight was conducted with the doors off; they were not installed on the helicopter.

A coworker and fellow pilot was flying in formation with the accident helicopter about 700 ft msl. He was at the 5 o'clock position of the accident helicopter at the same altitude when he noticed that the helicopter slowed from about 80 knots to 30 knots in about 15 seconds. He reported that "I felt something wrong and flew to his 10 o'clock position to see what was happening to him." The pilot further reported that the helicopter was descending in a reverse gliding attitude and struck the water with the tail boom first, before rolling upside down.

Witnesses on the ground from the United States Coast Guard and salvage company stated that the tie down ropes used for the rotor blades were found wrapped around the rotor head assembly, swash plate and pitch control rods. The ropes remained in place when the Coast Guard and recovery team arrived prior to the recovery operation taking place.

According to the pilot and Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) records, the pilot held a commercial pilot certificate with a rating for rotorcraft-helicopter as well as a flight instructor certificate with a rating for rotorcraft-helicopter. The pilot reported 467.7 total hours of flight experience and 467.7 of those hours where in the accident helicopter make and model. In the previous 90 and 30 days, the pilot reported about 50 hours and 20 hours respectively.

According to the FAA airworthiness and the helicopter's maintenance records, the two-seat, semi-rigid single-main-rotor, single-engine helicopter, serial number 1923M, was manufactured in 1991 and was issued a standard airworthiness certificate. The helicopter was equipped with floats and powered by a 160-horsepower Lycoming O-320-B2C series engine, which had 4,988.6 hours total time. As of the most recent annual inspection completed on December 28, 2017, the airframe had 6,988.7 hours total time. The current airframe and engine logbooks were on the helicopter at the time of the accident and were lost.

Examination of the helicopter by an FAA inspector revealed that the main rotor blades were deformed, the fuselage was substantially damaged, and the tail boom was partially separated. In addition, a tiedown rope and blade sock used to secure the helicopter rotor blades on the ground was found tightly wrapped around the swash plate and pitch change links of the main rotor.

At 0953, the weather recorded at Northwest Florida Beaches International Airport Panama City (ECP), Florida, about 12 miles north of the accident site included no clouds or restriction to visibility, wind from 140° true at 9 knots, and visibility 10 statute miles. The temperature was 20°C, and the dew point was 18°C. The altimeter setting was 30.27 inches of mercury. 

History of Flight

Prior to flight Preflight or dispatch event
Enroute-cruise Flight control sys malf/fail (Defining event)
Enroute-cruise Loss of control in flight
Emergency descent Collision with terr/obj (non-CFIT)

Pilot Information

Certificate: Commercial
Age: 22, Male
Airplane Rating(s): None
Seat Occupied: Right
Other Aircraft Rating(s): Helicopter
Restraint Used: 3-point
Instrument Rating(s): Helicopter
Second Pilot Present: No
Instructor Rating(s): Helicopter
Toxicology Performed: No
Medical Certification: Class 2 Without Waivers/Limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: 05/08/2018
Occupational Pilot: Yes
Last Flight Review or Equivalent: 04/08/2018
Flight Time:  (Estimated) 467.7 hours (Total, all aircraft), 467.7 hours (Total, this make and model), 369.2 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft), 50 hours (Last 90 days, all aircraft), 20 hours (Last 30 days, all aircraft) 


Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: ROBINSON
Registration: N923SM
Model/Series: R22 MARINER
Aircraft Category: Helicopter
Year of Manufacture: 1991
Amateur Built: No
Airworthiness Certificate: Normal
Serial Number: 1923M
Landing Gear Type: Float; Skid;
Seats: 2
Date/Type of Last Inspection: 12/28/2017, Annual
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 1369 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection:
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 6988.7 Hours as of last inspection
Engine Manufacturer: LYCOMING
ELT: Not installed
Engine Model/Series: O-320-B2C
Registered Owner: N923SM LLC
Rated Power: 160 hp
Operator: N923SM LLC
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: Visual Conditions
Condition of Light: Day
Observation Facility, Elevation: ECP, 68 ft msl
Distance from Accident Site: 12 Nautical Miles
Observation Time: 0953 CDT
Direction from Accident Site: 320°
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Visibility:  
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility (RVR):
Wind Speed/Gusts: 9 knots /
Turbulence Type Forecast/Actual: /
Wind Direction: 140°
Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual: /
Altimeter Setting: 30.27 inches Hg
Temperature/Dew Point: 20°C / 18°C
Precipitation and Obscuration: No Obscuration; No Precipitation
Departure Point: PERRY, FL (40J)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Destination: DESTIN, FL (DTS)
Type of Clearance: None
Departure Time: 0830 EST
Type of Airspace: Class G

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Minor
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 1 Minor
Latitude, Longitude: 30.173889, -85.807500 (est)

Loss of Lift: Mosquito XE, N725JC; accident occurred May 02, 2018 in Iron Station, Lincoln County, North Carolina

Timothy Kniess, left, was able to crawl away after his experimental amateur-built helicopter crashed on the front yard of his home.







Aviation Accident Final Report - National Transportation Safety Board 

Additional Participating Entity:
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Charlotte, North Carolina


Investigation Docket - National Transportation Safety Board:


Location: Iron Station, NC
Accident Number: GAA18CA250
Date & Time: 05/02/2018, 1000 EDT
Registration: N725JC
Aircraft: MICHAEL R ALEXANDER MOSQUITO XE
Aircraft Damage: Destroyed
Defining Event: Loss of lift
Injuries: 1 Minor
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal 

Analysis 

The noncertificated pilot reported that, while practicing hovering the helicopter in his yard, the experimental amateur-built helicopter struck a tree with the tail rotor. He added that, the next thing he knew the helicopter developed "a huge vibration suddenly and [he] had no heading control". Subsequently, the helicopter impacted the ground.

The pilot reported that there were no preaccident mechanical failures or malfunctions with the helicopter that would have precluded normal operation. The helicopter was destroyed by a post-crash fire.

The pilot reported in the NTSB Pilot/Operator Aircraft Accident/Incident Report form (6120.1) that he should have taken more dual instruction, and he should have chosen a more open area for hover practice. 

Probable Cause and Findings

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be:
The noncertificated pilot's decision to practice hovering the helicopter in a confined space, which resulted in the tail rotor striking a tree.

Findings

Aircraft Heading/course - Not attained/maintained
Personnel issues Aircraft control - Pilot
Environmental issues Tree(s) - Contributed to outcome
Aircraft Prop/rotor parameters - Not attained/maintained

Factual Information

History of Flight

Maneuvering-hover Loss of lift (Defining event)
Maneuvering-hover Controlled flight into terr/obj (CFIT)

Pilot Information

Certificate: None
Age: 56, Male
Airplane Rating(s): None
Seat Occupied: Single
Other Aircraft Rating(s): None
Restraint Used: None
Instrument Rating(s): None
Second Pilot Present: No
Instructor Rating(s): None
Toxicology Performed: No
Medical Certification: Sport Pilot None
Last FAA Medical Exam:
Occupational Pilot: No
Last Flight Review or Equivalent:
Flight Time: (Estimated)

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: MICHAEL R ALEXANDER
Registration: N725JC
Model/Series: MOSQUITO XE NO SERIES
Aircraft Category: Helicopter
Year of Manufacture: 2013
Amateur Built: Yes
Airworthiness Certificate: Experimental
Serial Number: MXE 1123110B
Landing Gear Type: Skid
Seats: 1
Date/Type of Last Inspection: 04/03/2018, Annual
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 612 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection:
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 350 Hours at time of accident
Engine Manufacturer: Intec
ELT: Not installed
Engine Model/Series: 800
Registered Owner: On file
Rated Power: 95 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: KIPJ, 875 ft msl
Distance from Accident Site: 3 Nautical Miles
Observation Time: 1355 UTC
Direction from Accident Site: 322°
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Visibility:  10 Miles
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility (RVR):
Wind Speed/Gusts: 8 knots /
Turbulence Type Forecast/Actual: / None
Wind Direction: 230°
Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual: / N/A
Altimeter Setting: 30.32 inches Hg
Temperature/Dew Point: 20°C / 9°C
Precipitation and Obscuration: No Obscuration; No Precipitation
Departure Point: Iron Station, NC
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Destination: Iron Station, NC
Type of Clearance: None
Departure Time: 1000 EDT
Type of Airspace: Class G

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Minor
Aircraft Damage: Destroyed
Passenger Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Fire: On-Ground
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries:1 Minor
Latitude, Longitude: 35.440000, -81.120000 (est)