The following are the reports of aviation accidents and incidents that have occurred in Arizona from late July, thru late August. APA will be using this detailed information to develop safety programs, briefings, and posters/flyers that would help pilots learn from the mistakes being made by others, and take the action necessary to prevent them from having similar occurrences.

Aviation safety this past reporting was very surprising. At this point I’m not sure if pilots had stopped flying, or if they were suddenly paying more attention to what they were doing, and being much safer in their flying. I would really prefer it to be the later. In this last period there were only three accident/ incidents that came to my attention thru the various sources, and nobody got hurt. All this was in spite of the increase in the number of pilot deviations that had occurred.

In continuing with the expanded scope of the report, using information from the ASN, FAA, NTSB, and APA members, I hope this report will help you see what’s going on out there, and help you to avoid making the same mistakes others have made, and make your flying a lot safer.  

The last accident description from last month’s report is repeated this month with the NTSB preliminary report’s considerable information which was unavailable when the APA report was prepared last month. 




Date:   July 27, 2021

Info. Source: NTSB

Location:   Tucson    (RYN)

Type:   Rutan Long-EZ

injuries:    1 Serious,  1 Fatality


On July 27, 2021, about 0713 MST, an amateur-built experimental Long-EZ airplane was substantially damaged when it was involved in an accident near Tucson. The pilot was fatally injured, and the pilot rated passenger was seriously injured.

A preliminary review of ADS-B data indicated that the airplane departed from Ryan Airfield Airport (RYN), Tucson, on a northerly track. Subsequently, the airplane turned left to the west and after a few miles, to a southerly heading. About 12 miles from the airport, the airplane maneuvered and completed three 360° turns. The airplane then turned to an easterly heading toward RYN. The last recorded data was at 0713, consistent with the airplane on approach to runway 6R. 

The pilot contacted the RYN tower controller about 12 miles southwest of the airport and requested a practice power off landing. The pilot was instructed to make a straight in approach and report a two-mile final. The pilot reported a two-mile final and was cleared to land on runway 6R. Subsequently, the airplane impacted terrain about 500 ft short of the runway and came to rest inverted.

The rear seat pilot rated passenger stated that the pilot extended the speed brake during the approach because he was high in altitude. He further stated that the pilot became fast on several occasions on final and then became slow on short final. He told the pilot to add power but could not determine if the airplane would make the runway because of the poor visibility from the rear seat. He stated that the airplane sank, struck the ground hard, and then nosed over. 

Witnesses stated that the airplane looked low on the approach. Additionally, review of surveillance video from nearby businesses revealed that the airplane impacted terrain in a relatively flat attitude but shortly thereafter, nosed over and flipped inverted.



Date:   August 2, 2021

Info. Source: FAA

Location:   Amado  (AZ)

Type:  Piper PA28-140

Injuries: 2 Uninjured


The aircraft experienced an engine issue, and while making a forced landing, the wing hit a tree during the landing in a field 16 miles northwest of Nogales. The extent of the damage was unreported.



Accident Date:  August 3, 2021

Info. Source: FAA, NTSB

Location:      Tucson   (TIA)     

Aircraft Type:  Cessna 172

Injuries:  2 Uninjured


The Cessna was picked up, and set down hard by the jet blast from an airlines B737 on taxiway A, near taxiway A3. The airplane did not flip over, but the wing spar was broken, and the wing center section was damaged, and fuselage also sustained significant damage. The prop and engine also sustained significant damage. The NTSB only stated “there was substantial damage” with no additional details.



Date:   August 14, 2021

Info. Source: ASN, APA Member

Location:   Chandler

Type:  Aero Commander 200D

Injuries:  1 Uninjured


The aircraft had the right landing gear collapse as it was exiting runway 4L. The collapse occurred past the runway hold line, and did not close down the runway. Damage was unreported.

Please login to add a comment.