By Jim Timm JimTimm

September 2018 

 

The following are NTSB reports of aviation accidents that have occurred in Arizona from July through late August. The Arizona Pilots Association uses this detailed accident information to develop safety programs and briefings that will help pilots learn from the mistakes being made by others, and hopefully they will take the action necessary to prevent similar accidents from happening to them.

The September reporting period, in my opinion, is most likely not complete. Since the last (August) report, the NTSB has only issued reports on two accidents which are contained in this report. One occurred on June 26, and the other occurred on July 12. Based on past history, it is difficult to believe there have not been more reportable accidents occurring in this time frame. People have been flying, and I hope it’s true that they have been doing it safely. Do you think it’s been too hot, and the accident-prone pilots haven’t been flying? Something to think about. Unfortunately, just recently things have really gone bad and we have had two fatal accidents with two lives lost in each. They have been covered in the media, but as of this writing, the NTSB has not yet issued a notice. I hope we can make it through the year without any more serious accidents like these. Please don’t fly at the edge of your or your airplane’s operating envelope. 

Details of the two accidents reported in this period are detailed below, along with two that were as yet unreported. Also, the last part of this report contains the details of nine accidents that had occurred much earlier, but the accident details were released in the past reporting period.

 

THE FOLLOWING ACCIDENTS HAD OCCURRED IN THE PAST REPORTING PERIOD 

 

Accident Date: Tuesday, June 26, 2018

Report Dated: 8/2/2018 Preliminary Report

Title 14 CFR Part 91

Location: Phoenix

Aircraft Type: Cessna 172SP

Injuries: 1 Minor, 2 Uninjured

INFLIGHT ENGINE POWER LOSS

On June 26, 2018, about 1020 MST, a Cessna 172SP airplane was substantially damaged during a forced landing following a loss of engine power near Phoenix. The commercial pilot received minor injuries and the two passengers were not injured. The local flight departed Phoenix Deer Valley Airport (DVT) about 0920. The pilot reported that while maneuvering at 4,500-5,000 ft mean sea level (MSL), the vacuum annunciator lights illuminated and the engine immediately experienced roughness. He decided to depart the practice area and head back to DVT. He did not report an emergency or the engine roughness to air traffic control (ATC), because he didn't anticipate a loss of engine power. The pilot positioned the fuel mixture to full rich, and the boost pump switch to 'ON' however the engine continued to run rough during the return flight. About 8 miles northwest of DVT, as the pilot decreased altitude from 4,500 to 3,500 ft MSL, he was instructed by ATC to perform a left 360° turn. After completing the turn, the engine lost power and the propeller stopped rotating. The pilot configured the airplane for best glide, found a clearing in the desert terrain for the forced landing and updated ATC about his situation. During the landing roll, the airplane impacted rocks and nosed over. Examination of the airplane by a Federal Aviation Administration inspector revealed that the vertical stabilizer, rudder, right wing, and forward fuselage were substantially damaged.

Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and no flight plan was filed.

 

 

Accident Date: Thursday, July 12, 2018

Report Dated: 8/23/2018 Preliminary Report

Title 14 CFR Part 91 

Location: Tolani Lake

Aircraft Type: Beech 90 King Air

Injuries: 3 Uninjured

INFLIGHT UPSET

On July 12, 2018, about 0210 MST a Beech King Air C90A airplane experienced an inflight upset while in a climb near Tolani, Arizona. The pilot and passengers were not injured. The airplane sustained substantial damage to both wings. The airplane was on a positioning flight, instrument meteorological conditions were reported along the route of flight about the time of the accident, and an instrument flight rules flight plan was filed. The flight originated from Flagstaff Pulliam Airport (FLG) at 0255 mountain standard time and was destined for Gallup Municipal Airport (GUP), Gallup, New Mexico. 

The pilot reported that during the initial climb, with the auto pilot engaged, while climbing through 17,000 to 19,000 ft, the airplane entered an uncommanded left bank and downward pitch. The pilot disconnected the auto pilot system and regained control of the airplane. The pilot continued to his destination without further incident. 

The airplane was retained for further investigation.

 

 

Accident Date: Saturday, August 18, 2018

Location: Camp Verdi

Aircraft Type: Pietenpole Air Camper

Injuries: 2 Fatal

No NTSB report, media info only.

 

 

Accident Date: Monday, August 20, 2018

Location: Phoenix, DVT

Aircraft Type: Stolp Acroduster

Injuries: 2 Fatal

No NTSB report, media info only. 

 

 

THE FOLLOWING ACCIDENTS HAD OCCURRED AT AN EARLIER DATE WITHOUT DETAILED INFORMATION 

 

Accident Date: March 26, 2018

Report Dated: 7/5/2018 Factual Report

Title 14 CFR Part 91

Location: Tucson

Aircraft Type: Starduster Too

Injuries: 1 Minor

LANDING GEAR STRUCTURAL FAILURE 

The pilot in the experimental amateur-built, tailwheel-equipped airplane reported that this was his third test flight. During the landing roll, he heard a loud noise, and the left side of the airplane dropped. The airplane veered to the left and exited the left side of the runway. The left side of the airplane dug into the ground and the airplane nosed over.

The FAA Aviation Safety Inspector that examined the airplane reported that the left main landing gear axle weld had failed. The airplane sustained substantial damage to the vertical stabilizer, the rudder and right upper wing spar.

 

 

Accident Date: March 12, 2018

Report Dated: 6/21/2018 Factual Report

Title 14 CFR Part 91

Location: Green Valley

Aircraft Type: Cessna 172

Injuries: 1 Uninjured

LOSS OF CONTROL LANDING

The pilot reported that during the landing roll he felt as though the airplane was being pushed to the left side of the runway and he applied full right rudder and left aileron. The airplane exited the left side of the runway, and he added power to prevent the airplane's nose from colliding with a drainage culvert, but the airplane accelerated and impacted a tree. The airplane sustained substantial damage to the leading edge of the left wing.

The pilot reported that the wind at the destination airport was 090 at 10 knots gusting to 15. The nearest weather reporting station, located 14 miles to the north at the departure airport, reported about the time of the accident the wind was from 040 at 3 knots. The pilot landed to runway 24 because of the 2.9 percent uphill gradient.

 

 

Accident Date: April 8, 2018

Report Dated: 7/5/2018 Final Report

Title 14 CFR Part 91

Location: Tucson

Aircraft Type: Piper PA 28

Injuries: 1 Uninjured

GROUND COLLISION

The student pilot reported that, while taxiing to park, he aligned the airplane with the parking spot, added power to make the turn, and then heard a "boom." He shut the engine down and examined the airplane and found that the left wing had hit a pole. The airplane sustained substantial damage to the left-wing rear spar. 

The flight safety officer for the operator reported that there were no pre accident mechanical failures or malfunctions with the airplane that would have precluded normal operation. The safety officer further reported that the company policy was to shut down the airplane on the yellow taxiway centerline before pushing the airplane back into the parking spot. He added that, after interviewing other flight crews, he learned that flight instructors had been demonstrating incorrect parking methods to students, including the student who taxied into the pole.

 

 

Accident Date: April 24, 2018

Report Dated: 6/22/2018 Factual Report

Title 14 CFR Part 91

Location: Wickenburg

Aircraft Type: Piper PA 28

Injuries: 2 Uninjured

FLIGHT TRAINING PROBLEM

The flight instructor reported that, while abeam the intended touchdown point, he reduced power to idle for the student pilot to perform a simulated engine failure approach. The student pilot maneuvered for the runway and added full flaps (40°), decreasing airspeed to about 62 to 68 knots. The instructor asked the student if he believed he would be able to make the runway given his airspeed, and the student pilot retracted the flaps to 0° and then back to 25°. The airplane began to sink, the flight instructor added full flaps to "regain some lift," and he instructed the student pilot to recover. The student pilot put both hands on the yoke and pitched up. The flight instructor said, "my controls," applied full power and attempted to lower the nose, but the student pilot froze and continued to pitch up. The flight instructor repeated the exchange of flight controls command, the student pilot released control of the yoke and retracted the flaps to 0°. The flight instructor put the flaps back to 25° and pitched the nose down in an attempt to recover. The airplane struck the top of a tree, the flight instructor reduced power and landed short of the runway; the nose landing gear collapsed. The airplane sustained substantial damage to both wings and empennage.

The Federal Aviation Administration inspector reported that, after conducting interviews, it was revealed that the flight instructor took control of the airplane "well below 500 feet from the ground." He also added that there may have been a communication barrier between the flight instructor and the student pilot. He reported that the student pilot paused for 20 to 30 seconds to comprehend each question before answering.

 

 

Accident Date: April 29, 2018

Report Dated: 7/6/2018 Factual Report

Title 14 CFR Part 91

Location: Page

Aircraft Type: Cessna 182

Injuries: 4 Uninjured

ABNORMAL RUNWAY CONTACT

The pilot reported that, during takeoff, the airplane experienced a "loss of lift." He added that he rejected the takeoff, and while landing back on the runway, the airplane bounced and veered left. The airplane exited the runway and came to rest in a shallow ditch. The airplane sustained substantial damage to the left wing.

The pilot reported that the maximum gross weight of the airplane was 3,100 pounds and the weight at the time of the accident was 3,055 pounds.

The automated weather observation station located on the airport reported that, about 17 minutes before the accident, the wind was from 250° at 10 knots, gusting to 19 knots, visibility 10 statute miles, cloud condition clear, temperature 26°C (79°F), dew point -16°C (3°F), altimeter setting 29.71" Hg. The airplane was departing runway 15. The estimated density altitude was 6,816 ft.

 

 

Accident Date: May 4, 2018

Report Dated: 7/30/2018 Factual Report

Title 14 CFR Part 91

Location: Glendale

Aircraft Type: Cessna 172

Injuries: 1 Uninjured

LOSS OF CONTROL IN FLIGHT

The flight instructor reported that, during takeoff, the solo-student pilot realized he had a crosswind from the right and applied right aileron and right rudder. He added, that as the student rotated, the airplane drifted to the left, the student lost control, pulled the engine power to idle, and aborted the takeoff. Subsequently, during touchdown, the airplane veered hard to the left, exited the runway, and the nose landing gear collapsed. The airplane sustained substantial damage to the forward fuselage.

The automated weather observation system at the accident airport reported that, about the time of the accident, the wind was calm. The student pilot was departing on runway 1.

 

 

Accident Date: May 5, 2018

Report Dated: 7/30/2018 Factual Report

Title 14 CFR Part 91

Location: Chandler

Aircraft Type: Cessna A185F

Injuries: 2 Uninjured

LOSS OF CONTROL LANDING

The pilot of the tailwheel-equipped airplane reported that, during final approach, the airplane required about 10 degrees of crab to the right to maintain alignment with the runway. During the landing flare, he reduced power to idle, slowly applied rudder to align the fuselage with the runway centerline, and added right aileron to counter the crosswind. He added that, during the 3-point landing, the airplane bounced. During the landing roll, he had full right aileron countering the wind when a "perceived" gust lifted the right wing. He held full right aileron, full aft yoke, and used the rudder to maintain alignment. Subsequently, about 40 knots groundspeed, the left main landing gear collapsed, and the left wing impacted the runway. The airplane sustained substantial damage to the left wing and aileron. The pilot reported that the left main landing gear detached from the airplane.

The Federal Aviation Administration inspector reported that the airplane had been in an accident in 1990 and repaired in 1995. He added that, the maintenance records show that the left gear and left wing (along with several other items) had been replaced during the 1995 repair. He also reported, the landing gear bolt was bent and the threads on the nut were stripped.

The automated weather observation system located at the accident airport reported that, about 20 minutes before the accident, the wind was from 110° at 8 knots, gusting to 19 knots. The same observation system reported that, about 10 minutes after the accident, the wind was from 150° at 13 knots, gusting to 21 knots. The pilot landed on runway 4R.

 

 

Accident Date: Thursday, May 10, 2018

Report Dated: 8/1/2018 Factual Report

Title 14 CFR Part 91

Location: Wickenburg

Aircraft Type: Piper PA 28

Injuries: 1 Uninjured

LOSS OF CONTROL LANDING

The student pilot reported that the approach was stable, but during the landing roll, when applying the brakes, the airplane veered to the right. He released he brakes because he thought he needed to in order to maintain directional control, but he then reapplied the brakes. Subsequently, he added full power to go around, and after becoming airborne, the airplane turned left. The right wing struck a runway sign, the student reduced power, the airplane landed, and he applied the brakes to stop. The airplane sustained substantial damage to the stabilator.

The Safety Manager of the flight school reported that there were no pre-accident mechanical failures or malfunctions with the airplane that would have precluded normal operation.

The automated weather observation station located on the airport reported that, about 13 minutes after the accident, the wind was from 210° at 7 knots. The airplane landed on runway 05.

 

 

Accident Date: Friday, May 18, 2018

Report Dated: 8/1/2018 Factual Report

Title 14 CFR Part 91

Location: Wickenburg

Aircraft Type: Cessna 182

Injuries: 1 Uninjured

LOSS OF CONTROL LANDING

The pilot of the tailwheel-equipped airplane reported that, during the landing roll of a touch-and-go landing, he reconfigured the flaps for takeoff. He added that the airplane veered sharply to the right and he attempted to recover with full left rudder and brake. The airplane ground looped to the right and exited the runway. The left main landing gear collapsed and the left wing impacted the ground. The airplane sustained substantial damage to the left wing. The pilot reported that there were no pre accident mechanical failures or malfunctions with the airplane that would have precluded normal operation.

The pilot reported that the automated weather observation station located on the airport reported that, about 20 minutes before the accident, the wind was light and variable with no wind gusts. The airplane landed on runway 05. 

 

For a brief look at what has happened in 2017 based on the NTSB reports made available: