Tuesday, January 18, 2022

Controlled Flight into Terrain (CFIT): Piper PA22-150, N6916D; accident occurred January 14, 2022 near Lamesa Municipal Airport (KLUV), Dawson County, Texas

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; Lubbock, Texas

Investigation Docket - National Transportation Safety Board:

Location: Lamesa, Texas 
Accident Number: CEN22LA108
Date and Time: January 14, 2022, 19:02 Local
Registration: N6916D
Aircraft: Piper PA-22-150 
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Controlled flight into terr/obj (CFIT) 
Injuries: 1 None
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General aviation - Personal


During the night visual flight rules cross-country flight, the pilot monitored weather conditions on his tablet computer and observed “unspecified meteorological conditions,” which encompassed his intended destination. The pilot elected to divert to an alternate destination and climbed to 4,500 ft msl. The pilot noted that he had a kneeboard with destination airport information, and after diverting, he made notes denoting changes to reflect the new destination. He did not recall if he changed the pattern altitude for the new destination. He attributed this omission to distraction during the flight while he modified his flight plan via the airplane radio. As he approached the new destination, the horizon was not “definite,” but he could see the lights of the city and began a shallow descent. While descending, he noted that the city lights disappeared, and as he contemplated why this happened, the airplane struck the ground. He reported that there were no mechanical problems with the airplane before the accident and he “just flew it into the ground.”

The field elevation at the original destination was 1,561 ft msl, and the elevation new destination was 2,999 ft msl.

Probable Cause and Findings

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be:
The pilot’s failure to maintain clearance from terrain during a descent that resulted in an impact with terrain.


Aircraft Altitude - Not attained/maintained
Personnel issues Flight planning/navigation - Pilot

Factual Information

History of Flight

Enroute-descent Controlled flight into terr/obj (CFIT) (Defining event)

Pilot Information

Certificate: Private 
Age: 70, Male
Airplane Rating(s): Single-engine land
Seat Occupied: Left
Other Aircraft Rating(s): None
Restraint Used: 4-point
Instrument Rating(s): None
Second Pilot Present: No
Instructor Rating(s): None 
Toxicology Performed:
Medical Certification: BasicMed Unknown
Last FAA Medical Exam:
Occupational Pilot: No 
Last Flight Review or Equivalent:
Flight Time: 1200 hours (Total, all aircraft), 800 hours (Total, this make and model)

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Piper 
Registration: N6916D
Model/Series: PA-22-150 
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 1957 
Amateur Built:
Airworthiness Certificate: Normal
Serial Number: 22-4833
Landing Gear Type: Tricycle
Seats: 4
Date/Type of Last Inspection: Unknown 
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 2000 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection: 
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 
Engine Manufacturer: Lycoming
ELT: Installed, not activated Engine Model/Series: O-320
Registered Owner: 
Rated Power: 150
Operator: On file
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: Visual (VMC) 
Condition of Light: Night/dark
Observation Facility, Elevation: KGNC,3315 ft msl 
Distance from Accident Site: 36 Nautical Miles
Observation Time: 
Direction from Accident Site: 264°
Lowest Cloud Condition: Scattered / 1800 ft AGL 
Visibility: 5 miles
Lowest Ceiling: Broken / 2400 ft AGL
Visibility (RVR):
Wind Speed/Gusts: 19 knots / 27 knots
Turbulence Type Forecast/Actual:  /
Wind Direction: 20°
Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual:  /
Altimeter Setting: 29.97 inches Hg
Temperature/Dew Point: 17°C / -4°C
Precipitation and Obscuration: Moderate - None - Haze
Departure Point: Addison, TX (ADS)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: VFR
Destination: Lamesa, TX
Type of Clearance: None
Departure Time: 16:08 Local 
Type of Airspace: Class G

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 None 
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: N/A 
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: 
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 1 None 
Latitude, Longitude: 32.7376,-101.951(est)

Location: Lamesa, Texas
Accident Number: CEN22LA108
Date and Time: January 14, 2022, 19:35 Local 
Registration: N6916D
Aircraft: Piper PA-22-150 
Injuries: 1 None
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General aviation - Personal

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Piper 
Registration: N6916D
Model/Series: PA-22-150 
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Amateur Built:
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None
Operator Designator Code:

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: 
Condition of Light:
Observation Facility, Elevation: 
Observation Time:
Distance from Accident Site: 
Temperature/Dew Point:
Lowest Cloud Condition:
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: / ,
Lowest Ceiling: 
Altimeter Setting:
Type of Flight Plan Filed:
Departure Point: 

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 None 
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries:
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 1 None
Latitude, Longitude: 32.7376,101.951 (est)

DAWSON COUNTY, Texas (KCBD) - A 70-year-old man has only minor injuries after crashing a small plane in a desolate area in West Texas.

The crash happened on the evening of January 13, 2022, about 15 miles east of Lamesa, Texas. It was around 7:30 p.m. when the Dawson County Sheriff’s Office received the call.

The Lubbock Civil Air Patrol reports it was alerted to a missing plane on Jan. 14. The pilot, 70-year-old Dennis Harrington, walked to a distant road to get help. The Dawson County Sheriff’s Office found him, but Harrington could not tell them where the plane crashed.

Sgt. Steven Blanco with DPS says Harrington was able to look up a map on his cell phone before he lost reception and knew the closest major roadway was Hwy. 180. He was able to call for help. He reported he lost control of the plane. He was flying from Addison, Texas to Hobbs, NM and was trying to land at the Lamesa airport to refuel.

Dawson County Sheriff Matt Hogg says a deputy, one person from EMS and one person from Fire drove on Hwy. 180, then began walking north to the last known location of the plane. Sheriff Hogg says the team reported they walked about 3.5 miles before finding Harrington. He was taken to the Medical Arts Hospital in Lamesa and had minor injuries.

Civil Air Patrol Commander Kyle Vernon says Harrington walked South for two hours over the rough terrain with steep drop-offs. The sun had already set when the plane crashed.

Because of the high winds and blowing dirt in the area, DPS could not use its helicopter to help find the crashed plane. DPS reports the Dawson County Sheriff’s Department, EMS and Fire were able to find the plane the next day with the help of the Lubbock Civil Air Patrol.

A ground-team member from Lubbock used a personal drone and was able to find the downed plane in a single flight, which helped the team eliminate 40 percent of the search area.

The plane was found around sunset.

LAMESA, Texas — The Texas Department of Public Safety said a pilot suffered minor injuries in a plane crash Friday evening along the Dawson/Borden county line, 15 miles east of Lamesa.

“The pilot was flying from Addison … to Hobbs,” DPS said. “The pilot was attempting to land at the Lamesa Municipal Airport to refuel. While descending the pilot lost control of the plane and crash landed.”

DPS said there were high winds at the time. The pilot was identified as Dennis Harrington, 70, of Hobbs. The plane was described as a Piper PA-22-150 Tri-Pacer.

1 comment:

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    KLUV 150115Z AUTO 02024G34KT 4SM HZ OVC033 14/M04 A2997
    KLUV 150055Z AUTO 01030G38KT 3SM HZ BKN033 OVC110 15/M05 A2994


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