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N6520Q accident description

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Tail numberN6520Q
Accident dateAugust 17, 2003
Aircraft typeAlon A-2 (Aircoupe)
LocationKetchikan, AK
Additional details: None

NTSB description

HISTORY OF THE FLIGHT

On August 17, 2003, sometime after 1432 pacific daylight time, a wheel equipped Alon A2 (Aircoupe) airplane, N6520Q, is presumed to have crashed between Port Hardy, British Columbia, Canada, and Ketchikan, Alaska. Neither the airplane nor its occupants have been located. The airplane was being operated as a visual flight rules (VFR) cross-country personal flight under Title 14, CFR Part 91 when the accident occurred. The airplane, registered to and operated by the pilot, is presumed to have been destroyed. The certificated private pilot and the sole passenger are presumed to have received fatal injuries. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the point of departure, and a VFR flight plan was filed by the pilot. Marginal VFR meteorological conditions prevailed along the pilot's intended flight path. The accident flight originated at the Port Hardy Airport, about 1432, and was en route to the Ketchikan International Airport.

About 1441, the pilot contacted the In-Flight One position at the Port Hardy Automated Flight Service Station (AFSS) via radio and reported that he was clear to the northwest of the Port Hardy airport environment. Shortly thereafter, the pilot requested the frequency for Vancouver Center. After receiving the frequency for Vancouver Center, no further radio communications were received from the accident airplane.

The anticipated flight path included extensive areas over open ocean waters while en route to Ketchikan.

During a telephone conversation with a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) operations inspector from the Juneau Flight Standards District Office, personnel from the Port Hardy AFSS reported that marginal VFR weather conditions were present between Port Hardy and Ketchikan during the accident flight.

The accident airplane did not reach the intended destination of Ketchikan, and was not located at any en route airport. The FAA issued an alert notice (ALNOT) at 1857 Alaska daylight time. Search personnel from Canada and the United States began an extensive search effort that included aircraft, surface vessels, and ground search personnel. The search was suspended on August 27, 2003.

CREW INFORMATION

The pilot held a private pilot certificate with an airplane single-engine land rating.

The most recent medical certificate issued to the pilot, was a third-class medical certificate issued on October 3, 2003. The medical certificate contained the limitation that the holder must wear corrective lenses for distant vision, and have corrective lenses available for near vision.

No personal flight records were located for the pilot, and the aeronautical experience listed on page 3 of this report was obtained from a review of FAA records. On the pilot's application for medical certificate, dated October 3, 2003, the pilot indicated that his total aeronautical experience consisted of 1,000 hours.

METEOROLOGICAL INFORMATION

According to Canadian search personnel, weather conditions along the pilot's anticipated flight route consisted of low clouds, rain, and fog.

SURVIVAL ASPECTS

Search personnel reported that survival time, in water less than 40 degrees F, is typically less than one hour.

SEARCH AND RESCUE

Both Canadian and United States search personnel reported they conducted an extensive search along the pilot's anticipated route of flight. Search efforts were unsuccessful, and the airplane, pilot, and passenger remain missing.

(c) 2009-2011 Lee C. Baker. For informational purposes only.