Saturday, February 12, 2022

Inflight Upset: Cirrus SR22, N987AA; accident occurred February 09, 2022 at Moore County Airport (KSOP), Pinehurst, North Carolina



















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; Greensboro, North Carolina

Investigation Docket - National Transportation Safety Board: https://data.ntsb.gov/Docket

CraigAir LLC


Location: Pinehurst, North Carolina
Accident Number: ERA22LA125
Date and Time: February 9, 2022, 17:48 Local
Registration: N987AA
Aircraft: CIRRUS DESIGN CORP SR22 
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Inflight upset
Injuries: 2 None
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General aviation - Personal

Analysis

The Cirrus pilot reported making a radio call on what he thought was the published common traffic advisory frequency (CTAF) when the flight was 10 miles away, then continued to the airport for a straight-in approach to runway 23 making radio calls. During the same time frame, a flightcrew member of an Army helicopter announced on the CTAF when their flight was on 10, 5, and 2 nautical mile final
for runway 5. The Cirrus pilot indicated that he did not hear any communication on the CTAF and he was unable to activate the runway lights using the CTAF. When the Cirrus flight was between 2 and 3 miles from the airport, he saw a helicopter at the opposite end of the runway moving to the east, adding that the sun was in his eyes which was “definitely a factor.” He did not hear the helicopter on the selected CTAF frequency and made a radio call on the CTAF that he was on short final approach. A flightcrew member of the military helicopter reported they did not hear any advisory call from the airplane and after they spotted it, the IP took the controls and turned to the right (east) to avoid a collision. The Cirrus pilot indicated that after flying over the airport property fence, he looked to his left and noted a military helicopter several hundred feet above his altitude. He continued his descent to runway 23 and when the flight was about 15 to 20 ft AGL the flight encountered, “very strong turbulence” which caused the left wing to drop. He recovered from that and then when the flight was between 5 and 10 ft AGL encountered another round of “very strong turbulence” which made the right wing contact the runway resulting in substantial damage to the wing. The airplane went to the right and skidded into the grass. The military helicopter continued to the east and reported that since they could not affect the situation continued with the training.

A short audio recording of the CTAF recorded a flightcrew member of the military helicopter announcing they were on a 2 mile final for runway 5, followed by an announcement that they were departing to the east off of runway centerline. 

Postaccident examination of the radios of the Cirrus airplane revealed the pilot had selected the #2 radio to transmit, which was set to 122.700 MHz. That frequency was the departure airport CTAF. The accident airport published CTAF was 123.05MHz.

Probable Cause and Findings

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be:
The in-flight encounter while on final approach with high-speed trailing vortices from a military helicopter, resulting in abnormal runway contact. Contributing to the accident was the Cirrus pilot’s incorrect selection of the common traffic advisory frequency on the aircraft’s radio.

Findings

Environmental issues (general) - Effect on operation
Personnel issues Use of equip/system - Pilot

Factual Information

History of Flight

Approach-VFR pattern final Inflight upset (Defining event)
Approach-VFR pattern final Loss of control in flight
Landing-flare/touchdown Abnormal runway contact

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): Airplane
Second Pilot Present: No
Instructor Rating(s): None
Toxicology Performed:
Medical Certification: Class 3 With waivers/limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: December 21, 2021
Occupational Pilot: No 
Last Flight Review or Equivalent: June 25, 2020
Flight Time: (Estimated) 1468.6 hours (Total, all aircraft), 1369 hours (Total, this make and model), 1469 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft), 65 hours (Last 90 days, all aircraft), 12.5 hours (Last 30 days, all aircraft), 3.1 hours (Last 24 hours, all aircraft)

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: CIRRUS DESIGN CORP 
Registration: N987AA
Model/Series: SR22 NO SERIES 
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 2003
Amateur Built:
Airworthiness Certificate: Normal
Serial Number: 0513
Landing Gear Type: Tricycle
Seats: 4
Date/Type of Last Inspection: August 6, 2021 Annual 
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 3400 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection: 
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 2409 Hrs as of last inspection
Engine Manufacturer: Continental
ELT: C126 installed, activated, did not aid in locating accident
Engine Model/Series: IO-550-N7B
Registered Owner: 
Rated Power: 310 Horsepower
Operator: On file 
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: Visual (VMC) 
Condition of Light: Dusk
Observation Facility, Elevation: KSOP,461 ft msl
Distance from Accident Site: 0 Nautical Miles
Observation Time: 17:56 Local
Direction from Accident Site: 255°
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear 
Visibility 10 miles
Lowest Ceiling: None 
Visibility (RVR):
Wind Speed/Gusts: / 
Turbulence Type Forecast/Actual: Unknown / None
Wind Direction: 
Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual: Unknown / N/A
Altimeter Setting: 29.98 inches Hg 
Temperature/Dew Point: 10°C / -1°C
Precipitation and Obscuration: No Obscuration; No Precipitation
Departure Point: Erwin, NC (HRJ)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Destination: Pinehurst, NC 
Type of Clearance: None
Departure Time: 17:32 Local
Type of Airspace:

Airport Information

Airport: MOORE COUNTY SOP
Runway Surface Type: Asphalt
Airport Elevation: 459 ft msl 
Runway Surface Condition: Dry
Runway Used: 23 
IFR Approach: None
Runway Length/Width: 6503 ft / 150 ft
VFR Approach/Landing: Full stop; Straight-in

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 None 
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: 1 None
Aircraft Fire: On-ground
Ground Injuries: 
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 2 None 
Latitude, Longitude: 35.237423,-79.389034(est)



Location: Southern Pines, North Carolina
Accident Number: ERA22LA125
Date and Time: February 9, 2022, 17:48 Local 
Registration: N987AA
Aircraft: CIRRUS DESIGN CORP SR22
Injuries: 2 None
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General aviation - Personal

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: CIRRUS DESIGN CORP
Registration: N987AA
Model/Series: SR22 NO SERIES
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Amateur Built:
Operator: On file
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None
Operator Designator Code:

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: VMC
Condition of Light: Dusk
Observation Facility, Elevation: KSOP,461 ft msl 
Observation Time: 17:56 Local
Distance from Accident Site: 0 Nautical Miles
Temperature/Dew Point: 10°C /-1°C
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear 
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: / ,
Lowest Ceiling: None 
Visibility: 10 miles
Altimeter Setting: 29.98 inches Hg 
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Departure Point: Erwin, NC (HRJ)
Destination: Southern Pines, NC

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: 35.237423,-79.389034 (est)















WARRANTY:
There is no warranty, express or implied for the information provided herein or the condition, useability, workability, operability or marketability of the aircraft salvage. All times are approximate and the logbooks and aircraft should be inspected by each bidder BEFORE BIDDING. Failure of the bidder to view the salvage or wreckage, or confirm any information provided is NOT grounds for a claim or withdrawal of bid after bid closing date.
 
HOURS estimated from logbooks or other information - not guaranteed or warranted

AIRCRAFT:  2003 Cirrus SR22 N987AA, s/n: 0513

The last Annual Inspection is dated 08/06/2021 at Hobbs 2409.4. 

The last log entry on 02/10/2022 records Hobbs 2567.9

ENGINE: Continental IO-550N, s/n: 686819. 

The last annual inspection entry is date 08/06/2021 and notes Hobbs 2409.4

PROPELLER:  Hartzell PHC-J3YF-1RF, s/n: FP2163B 

Prop Annual inspection recorded in the engine log on 08/06/21 at Hobbs 2409.4

DESCRIPTION OF ACCIDENT:  On February 09, 2022, N987AA was damaged while landing at Moore County Airport, North Carolina                                                     
LOCATION OF AIRCRAFT:  AMF Aviation LLC, Springfield, Tennessee

REMARKS:  

Insurer reserves the right to reject any and all bids. 

Salvage is as is/where is. 

The posting information is the best to our knowledge. 

An inspection of the salvage is highly recommended. 

Logbooks may not be complete.

Read more here:   http://www.avclaims.com







Scotty Malta at the Moore County Airport.
~


Whispering Pines resident Cassie Stingle was on the way home Wednesday evening, going down Airport Road after having picked up her daughter from The O’Neal School, when she heard a low-flying aircraft.

“I immediately slowed down to watch an Apache helicopter flying really low to the ground and straight down the middle of the airport. It suddenly picked up speed and disappeared to my right.”

Stingle then saw the lights of a small plane coming from behind her. “Within just a few seconds, the plane hit the ground and my heart sank. I stopped my car and got out to see if anyone was hurt or if there was anything I could somehow do.”

Watching the smoke and a trail of fire, she snapped a picture while she waited for someone to arrive.

“I could hear the sirens coming almost immediately but I was still so relieved to see these two people standing outside their plane. It could have been so much worse.”

The Cirrus SR 22 single-engine plane, owned and piloted by Pinehurst resident Mark Craig, crash landed and came to rest nose down in a grass area just off the runway. The landing caused a small grass fire, which Southern Pines firefighters quickly extinguished. Neither Craig nor an unidentified passenger were injured.

J.A. Brecher shared a similar story and photo minutes after Stingle arrived on the scene.

“I saw the (helicopter) before I took the photo.”

Moore County Airport Manager Scotty Malta, a veteran airport manager with almost 20 years’ experience, quickly closed the airport runway after the crash. He sent out the official NOTAM — Notice to Airmen — turned off all runway lights, and instructed his staff to put large fabric Xs down the runway to ward off any additional air traffic.

Because there is no air control tower — the Federal Aviation Administration deems Moore County to have an “uncontrolled” airport — there are different guidelines to communicate with pilots. The FAA’s official position is that pilots “should” communicate with positions and intentions.

“Moore County Airport is relieved that there were no injuries and both the passenger and the pilot were able to walk away,” he said. “At this time, the FAA has released the plane, but the investigation continues regarding the extent of the communication and or any interaction with another aircraft. Again, we are thankful for the professionalism of the emergency responders and staff and appreciate the concern and assistance of local residents.”

Malta said the pilot did not report any mechanical issues with his plane. Helicopters operating around the airport at the time could have affected the plane’s landing. The military regularly uses the airport property for various operations.

“It appears that the pilot was caught in a small microburst and was just a victim of circumstances,” Malta said.

Debris had been removed by Thursday morning and normal operations restored.

“Pilots and clients have been especially patient and understanding,” Malta said. “We were able to secure a unique sweeper for this type of clean-up, but before we were able to locate one, both Whispering Pines and Pinehurst offered us the use of similar equipment. Throughout the last 24 hours, the airport is fortunate to have these reports to share instead of recounting something much worse.”

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