General Aviation Accident Bulletin

Recent general aviation and air carrier accidents.

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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.


November 9, 2021, Sarasota, Fla.

Piper PA-28-151 Warrior

The airplane was substantially damaged at about 1605 Eastern time when it was ditched in a bay adjacent to the Gulf of Mexico. The solo student pilot was not injured. Visual conditions prevailed.

Returning from a round-trip cross-country flight, the pilot entered the traffic pattern and was turning from the downwind to base leg with a 10-degree flap setting when he noticed the throttle was stuck at 2000 rpm. After turning final and extending the flaps to 25 degrees, he realized the descent rate was too great and that the airplane was not going to reach the runway.

He completely retracted the flaps and loosened the throttle friction lock to restore power but was unsuccessful. To avoid houses at the approach end of the runway, he turned right and ditched the airplane. The airplane was subsequently recovered and examined. The throttle cable was jammed inside its housing.


November 11, 2021, Branchville, N.J.

Cessna 172S Skyhawk SP

At about 1048 Eastern time, the airplane was destroyed when it collided with terrain under unknown circumstances. The flight instructor and private pilot receiving instruction were fatally injured. Visual conditions prevailed.

Flight track data show the airplane took off from Caldwell, N.J., at about 1030 and flew predominately in a northwesterly direction as it climbed, reaching about 6400 feet MSL before entering a steep, descending left turn that continued until the flight track data was lost. The airplane came to rest in a wooded area; all major components were present. Flight control continuity was observed from the primary flight control surfaces to the cockpit controls. Initial examination of the engine did not reveal any preimpact mechanical malfunctions or failures that would preclude normal operation.


November 13, 2021, Beaver Island, Mich.

Britten-Norman BN-2A Islander

The airplane was substantially damaged at 1349 Eastern time when it impacted terrain short of the intended runway. The pilot and three passengers were fatally injured; one passenger sustained serious injuries. Visual conditions prevailed for the FAR Part 135 air taxi flight.

The airplane departed at 1332 for the 27-NM flight and cruised at 1500 feet MSL. About three NM from the destination, it began a descent and maneuvered toward a straight-in approach to Runway 35. Its ADS-B data ended about 0.24 NM south of the accident site, which was about 110 feet east of the extended centerline and 320 feet south of the runway threshold. Evidence indicated the airplane struck the ground in a left-wing-low, nose-low attitude. All major components of the airplane were located at the accident scene.


November 14, 2021, North Las Vegas, Nev.

IAI 1125 Westwind Astra

At about 1315 Pacific time, the business jet was substantially damaged when it overran the runway while landing. The pilot and passenger were uninjured. Visual conditions prevailed.

The pilot reported to first responders that he remained in the traffic pattern during the flight. He said the nose landing gear indicator was intermittent when the landing gear was extended prior to landing, so he aborted the first landing and reentered the pattern for a second attempt. Security video shows the airplane touching down with its landing gear fully extended and about 1500 feet of runway remaining. The airplane’s thrust reversers were not deployed. The airplane rolled off the end of the runway and continued over terrain until impacting a culvert, when the landing gear separated and the airplane came to rest.


November 14, 2021, Boulder City, Nev.

Piper PA-28R-200 Arrow II

The airplane was substantially damaged at about 1423 Pacific time when its right main landing gear failed to extend and the pilot landed with the undercarriage partially deployed. No one was injured. Visual conditions prevailed.

“A couple of days” after the airplane emerged from a paint shop and was test-flown, the pilot and a passenger departed on the accident flight. Approaching the destination, the right main landing gear would not extend. The pilot cycled the landing gear and made several abrupt and high-G maneuvers to try remedying the problem, but it would not extend. The pilot decided to land with the left main landing gear and the nose landing gear extended, which caused the airplane to depart the right side of the runway, coming to rest over a small ditch and sustaining substantial damage.

The pilot confirmed the right main landing gear was retracted, with the landing gear door open one or two inches. Climbing into the ditch below the wing, the pilot pulled hard on the main gear door a couple of times before the gear suddenly dropped down into place. The landing gear door control rod bolt had separated near its strut attachment, leaving the threaded portion in the bolt hole. The separated bolt head remained attached to the landing gear with safety wire.


This article originally appeared in the February 2022 issue of Aviation Safety magazine.

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