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Unregistere accident description

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Tail numberUnregistere
Accident dateSeptember 17, 2005
Aircraft typeBrown Hi-MAX 1700R
LocationFort Morgan, CO
Near 40.334166 N, -103.803889 W
Additional details: None

NTSB description

On September 17, 2005, approximately 1630 mountain daylight time, a Brown Hi-MAX 1700R, an unregistered single-engine airplane, registered to and operated by a private pilot, was destroyed when it impacted terrain near Fort Morgan Municipal Airport (3V4), Fort Morgan, Colorado. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the accident. The personal flight was being conducted under Title 14 CFR Part 91. The pilot, the sole occupant of the airplane, was fatally injured. The flight originated at 3V4, at an unknown time.

A friend of the pilot stated that the pilot had only flown the airplane on two occasions prior to the accident flight. On one of those previous flights, the pilot had broken the landing gear during a hard landing. The accident flight was the first flight since the landing gear had been repaired. The friend said that on another flight, the pilot exhausted his fuel supply and made a forced landing on the airport.. He said that when the engine loses power, the airplane becomes nose heavy and has a tendency to dive. He said witnesses told him it sounded as if the airplane's engine was "misfiring" or "sputtering." They said it appeared the pilot was trying to land in a field. The pilot turned and stalled the airplane. Other witnesses told sheriff's deputies they saw the airplane "diving toward the ground" or "diving nearly straight down." The airplane impacted a farm field approximately 200 yards southwest of the Fort Morgan Municipal Airport (3V4).

The pilot held a private pilot certificate with an airplane single-engine land rating, dated March 18, 1978, and a third-class medical certificate, dated March 28, 2000. According to the pilot's logbook, he had accumulated approximately 192.4 total flight hours with an unknown amount of time in the airplane make and model. The pilot's most recent biennial flight review was completed on April 19, 1999, in an Ercoupe single-engine airplane.

According to kit manufacturer's website, the Hi-MAX 1700R is a homebuilt "kit" airplane equipped with a 45 horsepower Rotax 447 engine. It has 3-axis flight controls, a removable high wing with a span of 25 feet, and a fixed tail wheel landing gear. The empty weight is 328 pounds, and it has a top speed of 80 mph. Approximately 350 to 400 hours is required to assemble the airplane.

At 1553, the Automated Surface Observation System (ASOS) at Colorado Plains Regional Airport (AKO), located in Akron, Colorado, about 29 miles east of the accident location, reported the following: Wind, 250 degrees at 5 knots; visibility, 10 statute miles (or greater); sky condition, clear below 12,000 feet; temperature, 29 degrees C.; dew point, minus 9 degrees C.; altimeter, 29.88 inches of Mercury.

Photographs taken by the Morgan County Sheriff showed an upright airplane with impact damage to the nose. Both wings separated from the airplane, and the fuselage was destroyed. The engine and the main landing gear separated from the airplane. The empennage was unremarkable.

An autopsy revealed no evidence of physical incapacitation or impairment. A toxicological screen was negative for ethanol and drugs in the urine. There was a 3.1 percent carbon monoxide concentration in blood.

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