General Aviation Accident Bulletin

Recent general aviation and air carrier accidents


AVweb’sGeneral Aviation Accident Bulletinis taken from the pages of our sister publication,Aviation Safetymagazine, and is published twice a month. All the reports listed here are preliminary and include only initial factual findings about crashes. You can learn more about the final probable cause in the NTSB’s website Final reports appear about a year after the accident, although some take longer. Find out more aboutAviation

August 9, 2018, Florence, S.C.

Cessna R182 Skylane RG

The airplane was substantially damaged at about 1312 Eastern time when its main landing gear collapsed during the landing roll. The solo private pilot was not injured. Visual conditions prevailed.

Before takeoff, a portable power supply was required to start the engine. About 10 minutes after takeoff, the pilot noted the fuel gauges were indicating zero and the ammeter was showing a discharge. He lowered the landing gear with the handle and visually observed the nose landing gear was extended, but there was no indication from the single light on the instrument panel that all landing gears were down and locked. After recycling the gear with the same results, he performed a flyby of the tower and was advised that the landing gear appeared to be down. By the time he was on downwind, the airplane lost all electrical power. During the landing roll, the main landing gear collapsed, the airplane veered left, and the left wing and horizontal stabilizer contacted the runway. The airplane came to rest in the grass off the left side of the runway.

The airplane was lifted from the runway and its main landing gear was manually extended utilizing the emergency hand pump. The airplane was then moved to the ramp.

August 10, 2018, Philadelphia, Penn.

Gulfstream G-IV

At about 2050 Eastern time, the airplane was cleared to land from a visual approach to Runway 35 at the Philadelphia International Airport (KPHL). During the approach, the airplane aligned with Taxiway E. About 0.10 mile from the end of Taxiway E, the pilot initiated a go-around. The airplane overflew four air carrier airplanes on Taxiway E during the go-around, coming within some 200 feet of the first one. At the time of the approach, the Runway 35 runway end identifier lights (REILs) and the precision approach path indicator lights (PAPIs) were out of service. There were no injuries to the seven passengers and crew, and the airplane was not damaged in the incident. The airplane was operating as a Part 135 on-demand air taxi flight.

August 12, 2018, South Beloit, Ill.

Piper PA-32R-300 Lance

The airplane impacted terrain at about 0832 Central time, shortly after takeoff. The pilot and two passengers suffered minor injuries; the airplane was substantially damaged. Day visual conditions prevailed for the flight.

The pilot later stated the engine cowling opened and rapidly began swinging back and forth just after lifting off the runway. The pilot reduced power and attempted to land straight ahead, but realized he was too far down the runway for a landing. He then added power and attempted to climb. The airplane subsequently developed a sink rate and impacted a cornfield about -mile off the end of the runway, damaging the engine mounts and fuselage.

August 12, 2018, West Palm Beach, Fla.

Pipistrel Sinus 912 Motorglider

At about 0840 Eastern time, the aircraft was destroyed by fire following a precautionary landing. The private pilot was not injured. Visual conditions prevailed.

After dropping off a passenger, the pilot restarted the engine, taxied out and took off to remain in the traffic pattern. He noticed the engine sounded “a little rough” and, as he turned downwind, he smelled smoke. He shut down the engine and returned for an uneventful landing. When the aircraft stopped, the pilot noticed flames below the right door. After he exited the air plane, the flames grew and eventually consumed the airplane. Examination revealed the engine exhaust manifold was cracked.

August 25, 2018, Swainsboro, Ga.

Cessna 182A Skylane

The airplane was destroyed when it collided with terrain at about 1400 Eastern time, shortly after takeoff. The commercial pilot and three passengers were fatally injured; one passenger was seriously injured. Visual conditions prevailed for the skydiving flight.

According to the operation’s parachute rigger, there were five successful flights earlier in the day prior to the accident. After the fourth flight, the pilot realized that the right wing fuel cap was missing. Subsequently, the parachute rigger was told the pilot and a mechanic decided to use “fuel cell tape” over the fuel filler port. The airplane then departed with a group of skydivers, and returned shortly after a normal flight. The parachute rigger saw the airplane taxi for takeoff but did not see it depart. Shortly afterward, he saw a police car, exited the hangar and saw a huge fire at the end of the runway.

A witness observed the accident airplane take off and later said it was about 150 feet over the runway when its engine stopped. The wings “rocked” left and right before the airplane pitched down and collided with the ground. The airplane came to rest about 2000 feet off the departure end of the runway, at the end of a 35-foot-long wreckage path. The left fuel tank and left flap were consumed by the postimpact fire. The right wing remained loosely attached by the right lift strut. The cabin and the instrument panel were consumed by the fire. All flight control surfaces were at the accident site and flight control continuity was established.

This article originally appeared in the November 2018 issue ofAviation Safetymagazine.

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