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N88359 accident description

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Tail numberN88359
Accident dateSeptember 07, 1996
Aircraft typeChampion 7GCBC
LocationGlennallen, AK
Additional details: None

NTSB description

HISTORY OF FLIGHT

On September 7, 1996, at 1850 Alaska daylight time, a wheel equipped Champion 7GCBC airplane, N88359, registered to and operated by the pilot, crashed during maneuvering flight approximately 30 miles north of Glennallen, Alaska. The airplane crashed at geographic coordinates 62 degrees, 42.303 minutes north and 145 degrees, 41.403 minutes west. The personal flight, operating under 14 CFR Part 91, departed Gulkana Airport for a local flight. No flight plan was filed and visual meteorological conditions prevailed. The certificated private pilot and the passenger were fatally injured. The airplane received substantial damage.

WITNESSES

There were two witnesses on the ground. One witness, Mr. Herman J. Schliesing, of Glennallen, Alaska, was the pilot's father-in-law. He and the other witness were hunting moose and were traveling in a track vehicle. Mr. Schliesing observed the airplane overfly their track vehicle and start to make a turn around. He stated that the airplane appeared to stall and crash.

The other witness, Mr. David D. Bruno, also of Glennallen, stated that he observed the airplane fly over their track vehicle. The airplane started a turn toward the south. Mr. Bruno stated the airplane was in a nose high attitude when it started the turn. The airplane was then observed to "stand up on one wing and stall." The airplane crashed to the ground and rotated 180 degrees after impact. Mr. Bruno stated that he has been a pilot for a long time.

Mr. Bruno advised that both occupants were strapped in their seats and that he cut the seat belts to extricate the occupants.

DAMAGE TO AIRCRAFT

All of the airplane's major components were located at the wreckage site. The engine, propeller, and instrument panel remained attached to the fuselage through cables and wires, and were displaced in a downward direction.

Both wings remained attached, but they were no longer supported by the wing struts and the wings were resting on the ground. The left and right wing struts were buckled.

The aft fuselage, directly behind the passenger compartment, was buckled and distorted.

The vertical fin, rudder, horizontal stabilizer, and elevator were not damaged.

PERSONNEL INFORMATION

The pilot's logbook was not located and the flight time information was derived from Federal Aviation Administration' application for medical certificate. The last application for medical certificate, dated 6/8/95 showed that the pilot had a total flight time of 300 hours and had flown 10 hours in the last six months.

AIRCRAFT INFORMATION

Aircraft logbooks were not available for review.

WRECKAGE AND IMPACT INFORMATION

The airplane crashed on a small ridge line near the intersection of two hunting trails. One trail was named the Haggard Creek Trail. The field elevation of the accident site was approximately 2,800 feet above mean sea level. The terrain was covered with an occasional small tree and lots of brush which was waist high. The terrain sloped away from the wreckage but was essentially level where the wreckage came to rest.

The airplane's direction of flight after making the low pass over the track vehicle was approximately 080 degrees. The airplane turned and the wreckage path aligned with 260 degrees. Approximately 18 feet in front of the nose of the airplane, which was pointing 080 degrees, there was a large gouge in the ground. The gouge measured 10 feet long, 6 feet wide, and approximately 2.5 feet deep.

At the edge of the gouge mark was a small tree that had been uprooted. Examination of the tree's roots shows that the roots had been cut.

Examination of the airplane's propeller showed chord-wise scoring and large pieces of propeller blade were missing from the propeller's leading edge.

Flight control continuity was established and all the flight controls remained attached to their respective locations. The flight control cables were not tight due to the general compression of the airframe.

Fuel was found in the airplane and the color and odor was consistent with 100 low lead aviation fuel. Examination of the cockpit and passenger compartment showed that the floor was pushed upward and into their respective compartments.

No evidence of any preimpact mechanical anomaly was discovered during the inspection of the airplane.

MEDICAL AND PATHOLOGICAL INFORMATION

Toxicological testing of the pilot disclosed therapeutic concentrations of the drugs pseudoephedrine and phenylpropanolamine in the blood and urine, and chlorpheniramine in the blood (see attached toxicological report). These drugs are commonly used in over the counter cold and/or allergy medicines, although there are no over the counter medications which contain both phenylproponalamine and pseudoephedrine. Usage labels associated witht eh antihistamine chlorpheniramine, typically contain warnings about possible side affects of drowsiness, and cautions about operating machinery and vehicles. Pseudoephedrine labels warn against possible dizziness.

Ingestion of any drug that may impair an airman's performance, without the permission of an FAA Aviation Medical Examiner, is prohibited by the FAA.

An autopsy of the pilot was accomplished on September 10, by the State of Alaska's Office of the Medical Examiner, 5700 East Tudor Road, Anchorage, Alaska.

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