“According to the pilot, he started carrying skydivers several days before the accident after familiarizing himself with the airport and airplane. The accident occurred on the fourth flight of the day. Around 2,000 ft during the initial climb, the airplane experienced a radio failure and the pilot noted a slight change in engine sound. He consulted with one of the tandem skydivers and continued to climb to 7,500 ft to allow the two pairs of skydivers to jump, which he felt was the safest course of action.”
Place holder until NTSB provides more in a preliminary report.
On June 23, 2018, about 1440 eastern daylight time, a Cessna 182, N5682B, struck three vehicles following a complete loss of engine power and subsequent forced landing to a residential area about one mile east of Herlong Recreational Airport (HEG), Jacksonville, Florida. The commercial pilot was not injured. The airplane received substantial damage to the right elevator and the right wing. The airplane was registered to Jumpstart Skydiving LLC and operated by the pilot as a 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 skydiving flight. Visual meteorological conditions were reported in the area about the time of the accident and no flight plan was filed. The local flight originated from HEG at 1400.
On June 10, 2018, about 1220 Atlantic standard time, a Cessna 182, N3889D, was substantially damaged during a forced landing after it experienced a total loss of engine power shortly after takeoff from the Antonio (Nery) Juarbe Pol Airport (ABO), Arecibo, Puerto Rico. The pilot was seriously injured, and the four passengers sustained minor injuries. The airplane was registered to an individual and operated by Skydive Puerto Rico as a Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 skydiving flight. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and no flight plan was filed for the local flight that departed about 1218.
On May 8, 2018, about 1500 central daylight time, a Cessna 182F airplane, N3291U, impacted a field 0.3 miles southeast of the airport shortly after takeoff from The Carter Memorial Airport (T91), Luling, Texas. The commercial pilot and 2 passengers sustained minor injuries, and 2 passengers were not injured. The airplane sustained substantial damage. The skydiving flight was conducted under the provisions of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and no Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) flight plan had been filed for the flight. The local flight was originating at the time of the accident.
The pilot stated that as part of his preflight inspection of the airplane he visually verified each fuel tank was full, and the total usable fuel capacity was 221 gallons. After takeoff, the airplane climbed to the flight planned altitude of 8,000 ft mean sea level (msl), and proceeded towards the destination airport. When the flight was near the planned refueling location of the Rockwood Municipal Airport, Rockwood, Tennessee, the pilot verified that the airplane had an adequate supply of fuel to reach the intended destination. While in contact with HSV air traffic control tower, he requested to descend to 6,000 ft msl, and was subsequently cleared to descend to 4,000 ft msl. At that time, the pilot noted HSV was to his left about 10 miles away. Shortly thereafter, while at an altitude about 3,500 ft msl, warning lights on the annunciator panel, which included a fuel pressure light, illuminated. The pilot declared an emergency with the controller, and the engine experienced a total loss of engine power. According to a Federal Aviation Administration inspector, the controller vectored the pilot to Epps Airpark (00AL), a private airport located in Harvest, Alabama, but the pilot was unable to locate it.
The pilot was conducting parachute jump operations near the airport. After climbing to altitude, he released his jumpers and returned to land. The pilot reported that, during the landing flare, the airplane struck the runway nosewheel first. He added that the airplane bounced, floated down the runway, and then settled to the right of the runway.
The airplane sustained substantial damage to the engine mount and right elevator.
The pilot reported that there were no preaccident mechanical malfunctions or failures with the airplane that would have precluded normal operation.
After multiple requests, the pilot did not submit the National Transportation Safety Board Pilot/Operator Aircraft Accident/Incident Report Form 6120.1.
The pilot reported that he departed for a parachute jump flight with 12 gallons of fuel onboard. He added that, after the parachute jumpers exited the airplane about 10,500 ft mean sea level (msl), he initiated a left spiraling descent back to the airport. He further added that he “heard and felt the engine start [to] quiet down as if it was shutting down.” He then began to make right descending turns and verified that the fuel selector was in the “both” position. He added that the cylinder head temperature was decreasing, so he switched back to left descending turns and that the “fuel starvation due to banking happened two more times.”
On June 12, 2017, about 2255 eastern daylight time, a Cessna P206A, N206TF, was substantially damaged during a forced landing while on approach to Eagles Nest Airport (31E), West Creek, New Jersey. The commercial pilot sustained minor injuries. The airplane was owned and operated by Seasky27 Productions LLC, under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 as a maintenance test flight. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time and a visual flight rules flight plan was filed but not activated for the flight that originated about 1 hour earlier from Danbury Municipal Airport (DXR), Danbury, Connecticut.
According to the pilot, he landed the airplane on the 1,800-ft-long asphalt runway in the rain at 70 mph with full flaps. He reported that, on final, he had considered conducting a go-around due to wind and weather, but “we were low, slow, and 130 pounds below maximum gross weight with very dynamic wind conditions at the time and …apartment buildings about 400 yards beyond the end of runway 19.” During the landing, he touched down with a right crosswind, about 600 ft beyond the runway threshold.
The pilot reported that, during the takeoff roll, the airplane encountered a gust of wind and veered left off the runway centerline. He added, that the airplane became airborne, but that he did not have “enough time” to avoid a parked helicopter. Subsequently, the left wing impacted the helicopter. He then reduced the engine power and the airplane landed without further incident.
The pilot reported that on the morning of the flight he used a fuel dipstick to check fuel tank quantities prior to his flight. The fuel tank dipstick was marked in the number of skydiving flights and reserve fuel had a mark as well. The right tank showed a higher fuel quantity than the left and when combined, the stick showed enough fuel for three flight loads of jumpers. He further stated that he fueled the airplane up to the “four load” level five days prior to the accident flight, which was the last time the airplane was flown.
On April 19, 2017, about 1918 mountain daylight time, an Cessna 210 airplane, N9589T, impacted a fence and irrigation equipment during an off airport forced landing while on approach to the Harriet Alexander Field Airport (ANK), Salida, Colorado. The private pilot was not injured, and the airplane was substantially damaged. The airplane was being operated by the pilot as a 14 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 91 business flight.
The pilot in the tricycle-gear-equipped airplane reported that he landed about 4 ft short of the asphalt runway. The nose landing gear struck the 6-inch-high asphalt perimeter and separated from the airplane. The pilot aborted the landing, the airplane bounced, and the pilot established a climb. He completed one traffic pattern and an approach. During the second landing, the pilot chose to land on the turf safety area parallel to the runway. When the airplane’s main landing gear touched down on the turf surface, the airplane nosed over. The airplane sustained substantial damage to the firewall, fuselage, left wing, and empennage.
On September 17, 2016, about 1918 Mountain standard time, a Cessna 182P, N20844, was destroyed when it impacted a residential structure, following a reported inflight fire near Gilbert, Arizona.
The pilot reported that this was his third skydiving flight of the day and he performed a back taxi on the runway for takeoff. He further reported that as he rotated the airplane for takeoff, he heard a “steady” stall warning horn, the flight controls felt mushy, and the airplane would not climb. The pilot reported that he aborted the takeoff and applied max braking and reverse thrust, but the airplane overran the runway remaining. Subsequently, the landing gear collapsed and the airplane collided with a fence.
On August 13, 2016, about 1100 central standard time, a Cessna TU206B airdrop configured airplane, N29225, registered to the pilot and operated by Gypsy Moth Skydive LLC of Benton, Kansas, sustained substantial damage during a forced landing after a loss of engine power while maneuvering in the vicinity of Skiatook, Oklahoma. All seven occupants, the private pilot and six passengers (parachutists), sustained minor injuries.
On July 21, 2016, about 1400 central standard time, a Cessna 208B air drop configured airplane, N7581F, registered to Desert Sand Aircraft Leasing Company, Inc., of Carson City, Nevada, sustained substantial damage during a runway excursion after landing on runway 18 at the Baldwin Airport (WI14), Baldwin, Wisconsin. The commercial pilot and 14 passengers were not injured. The air drop flight was being operated by Skydive Twin Cities, of Baldwin, Wisconsin, and conducted under the provisions of Federal Code of Regulations Part 91. No flight plan was filed and local traffic advisory was requested by the pilot. Visual meteorological conditions with light rain showers prevailed throughout the area. The flight originated from WI14 about 1350.
The commercial pilot reported that, after dropping off skydivers, he made a rapid spiraling descent back to the airport. The pilot added that, because the wind had changed such that it resulted in a tailwind, he initiated a go-around during the landing approach; however, when he advanced the throttle, the engine initially surged and then lost power. The pilot made a forced landing in a corn field near the end of the runway.
After the accident, the pilot drained about 7 gallons of fuel from the airplane. Fuel was present in the carburetor, but the gascolator bowl was empty. No other anomalies were noted. It is likely that the low level of fuel unported during the rapid spiraling descent, which led to the subsequent fuel starvation to the engine.
According to the Federal Aviation Administration, Aviation Safety Inspector that arrived at the scene shortly after the accident, he located the uninjured pilot in command (PIC) and a passenger rated pilot who were the only occupants of the airplane. The inspector reported that the PIC told him that he had fueled the airplane prior to the flight. The PIC told the inspector that he had flown 2.5 hours on the right tank which indicated 3.9 gallons of fuel remained per the electronic fuel quantity indicator, at which time he switched to the left tank which indicated 15 gallons of fuel remained per the electronic fuel quantity indicator.