AVweb’s General Aviation Accident Bulletin is taken from the pages of our sister publication, Aviation Safety magazine. All the reports listed here are preliminary and include only initial factual findings about crashes. You can learn more about the final probable cause on the NTSB’s website at www.ntsb.gov. Final reports appear about a year after the accident, although some take longer. Find out more about Aviation Safety at www.aviationsafetymagazine.com.
October 1, 2021, Chandler, Ariz.
Robinson R22/Piper PA-28-181
At about 0740 Mountain time, the Piper airplane and Robinson helicopter collided in midair. The airplane sustained minor damage; the flight instructor and student aboard it were not injured. The helicopter was destroyed; its flight instructor and student were fatally injured. Visual conditions prevailed.
Both aircraft were in parallel traffic patterns and in contact with ATC at the towered airport. The airplane was operating in a closed right traffic pattern for Runway 4R and had been cleared to land. The helicopter was operating in a closed right traffic pattern for Taxiway C, which was parallel to and to the right of Runway 04R, and had been cleared for the option. Shortly after the airplane turned final for Runway 4R, its flight instructor reported they felt and heard a loud bang, and declared an emergency, requesting tower personnel to visually check the Piper’s landing gear. On touchdown, the Piper veered left and came to rest between Runways 04R and 04L. The helicopter impacted terrain about 0.5 mile southwest of the approach end of Runway 04R. Recorded ADS-B data showed both aircraft appeared to be on a base-to-final turn when their flight paths intersected at about 0740:15 and 1400 feet MSL.
October 2, 2021, Lamesa, Texas
Beechcraft B23 Musketeer
The airplane was substantially damaged at about 1225 Central time when it was force-landed. The solo pilot was not injured. Visual conditions prevailed.
The airplane was on its first flight after unspecified maintenance had been performed. It was in the airport traffic pattern when the pilot reported an engine failure and declared an emergency. The pilot made a forced landing to a field just outside the airport’s perimeter. The airplane sustained substantial damage to its right wing, and to its nose landing gear and propeller.
October 2, 2021, Oregon City, Ore.
Zenith STOL CH750
At about 1646 Pacific time, the airplane was substantially damaged in an off-airport landing following engine failure. The pilot was not injured; the passenger sustained minor injuries. Visual conditions prevailed.
The pilot later reported the local flight was uneventful. Returning to land, he entered a left downwind for Runway 32. Shortly after turning final, the passenger smelled something burning. A few moments later, the engine sound changed for about five seconds, followed by total loss of power. The pilot was unable to make the runway and initiated an off-airport landing. During the landing sequence, the airplane impacted trees and terrain before it nosed over and came to rest inverted.
October 3, 2021, Warrensburg, MO
Tandem Airbike Experimental
The unregistered two-seat ultralight was destroyed when it collided with terrain. Both pilots aboard were fatally injured. Visual conditions prevailed.
The front-seat pilot had recently purchased the aircraft and asked the rear-seat pilot to teach him how to fly it. On the day of the accident, a witness saw the airplane turning and then saw the left wing drop. The airplane entered a descent and impacted the ground. The witness stated there was no cessation of engine operation. Post-accident examination revealed no mechanical anomalies that would have precluded normal operation.
This article originally appeared in the January 2022 issue of Aviation Safety magazine.
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