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N2534B accident description

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Tail numberN2534B
Accident dateJune 20, 1993
Aircraft typePiper PA-38-112
LocationPensacola, FL
Additional details: None

NTSB description

HISTORY OF FLIGHT

On June 20, 1993, at about 0034 central daylight time, a Piper PA-38-112, N2534B, registered to Pensacola Aviation Center Inc., operating as a 14 CFR Part 91 personal flight collided with trees while maneuvering and crashed. The airplane was destroyed. The private pilot was fatally injured and the passenger sustained minor injuries. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and no flight plan was filed. The flight originated from the Pensacola Regional Airport about 14 minutes before the accident.

The passenger stated in an interview with the NTSB investigator-in-charge that he has known the pilot since June 1992. He further stated that he went to a bar on June 19, 1993, at about 11 p.m. and observed the pilot playing a game of pool with a friend. During a conversation he asked the pilot when they would be going up on a flight, and the pilot replied, "right now if you want." They departed the bar for the airport, and stopped at a gas station to purchase a 12-pack of beer. Upon arrival at the airport, the pilot signed a rental agreement for the airplane and they walked out to the airplane for the flight. They entered the airplane without conducting a preflight inspection. Neither he or the pilot were wearing a seatbelt or shoulder harness. The pilot started the engine and taxied out to runway 8 for takeoff, and departed at about 0020. After takeoff, the pilot made a right turn and conducted a low pass down runway 35 before climbing out over a housing area. They flew around for about 5 to 10 minutes before the pilot turned back towards the airport. All of a sudden the airplane was in a dive, and the pilot did not say anything. The passenger stated he was being pressed down in his seat and thought the pilot was attempting to pull out of the dive when the airplane collided with trees and crashed.

Witnesses who were present at the bar before the pilot and passenger departed on the flight stated they observed the pilot consuming beer. The Pensacola Police Department obtained permission from the pilot's mother to examine the pilot's car. Upon entering the vehicle an open bottle of Michelob beer and an open can of Bud Lite beer was found in the car.

PERSONNEL INFORMATION

Review of the pilot's logbook revealed the pilot's last recorded flight was January 28, 1993. Additional information pertaining to the pilot is contained in NTSB Forms 6120.1/2 and 6120.4 First Pilot Information.

AIRCRAFT INFORMATION

Information pertaining to aircraft information is contained in NTSB Form 6120.4.

METEOROLOGICAL INFORMATION

Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the accident. For additional information, see NTSB Form 6120.4.

WRECKAGE AND IMPACT INFORMATION

Examination of the crash site revealed the airplane penetrated trees 75- to 80-feet tall while descending on a heading of about 210 degrees magnetic. The left wing collided with a tree and the airplane rotated around its vertical axis to the right. All fuel tanks were ruptured during the impact sequence and there was no postcrash fire. The main fuselage came to rest on its right side on a heading of 250 degrees magnetic, about 195 feet from the initial point of impact.

The propeller separated from the engine at the crankshaft flange. Torsional twisting and chordwise scarring were present on both propeller blades. Examination of the airframe, flight control system, engine assembly and engine accessories revealed no evidence to indicate any preimpact failure or malfunction.

MEDICAL AND PATHOLOGICAL INFORMATION

Postmortem examination of the pilot-in-command, Michael B. Jackson, was conducted by Dr. John J. Lazarchick, Assistant Medical Examiner, District I, Pensacola, Florida, on June 21, 1993. The cause of death was multiple blunt force trauma. Postmortem toxicology studies of specimens from the pilot were performed by the Sacred Heart Hospital, Pensacola, Florida, and by the Forensic Toxicology Research Section, Federal Aviation Administration, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. These studies were negative for neutral, acidic, and basic drugs. Postmortem alcohol 272.26 MG/DL which equates to .272 percent were present in the specimens obtained by Sacred Heart Hospital, and 292.00 MG/DL which equates to .292 percent of ethanol were present in the specimens tested by the FAA. In addition diphenhydramine was detected in the blood, and acetaminophen was detected in the urine.

A review of the pilot's medical records on file at the Federal Aviation Administration, Aeromedical Certificate Division, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, revealed the pilot completed an application and was evaluated for a third class physical on May 14, 1991. The pilot indicated on the application that he did not have or ever had an excessive drinking habit, and that he had not been admitted to a hospital for treatment. Records obtained from The Friary, Gulf Breeze, Florida, indicate the pilot was admitted to The Friary's residential treatment program for chemical dependency on January 26, 1991. He completed the program, and was discharged on February 23, 1991. The pilot did not meet the eligibility requirements for a third class medical certificate at the time of his application. The pilot's medical certificate at the time of the accident was expired.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

The airplane wreckage was released to the registered owner on June 21, 1993.

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