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N8829U accident description

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Tail numberN8829U
Accident dateJuly 24, 2006
Aircraft typeCessna 172F
LocationBrookville, IN
Near 39.666667 N, -85.166667 W
Additional details: None

NTSB description

HISTORY OF FLIGHT

On July 24, 2006, about 1720 eastern daylight time, a Cessna 172F, N8829U, piloted by a private pilot, sustained substantial damage on impact with trees and terrain near Brookville, Indiana. The local personal flight was operating under 14 CFR Part 91. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the accident. No flight plan was on file. The pilot was fatally injured. The flight originated from the Lewis Airfield, near Milan, Indiana, about 1630.

A Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) air traffic controller received a radio transmission from an airplane in reference to a distress call of another airplane in a forced landing near a lake. Civil Air Patrol and law enforcement were notified and they engaged in search and rescue operations on July 24, 2006. The airplane was found about 1340 on July 25, 2006, in a wooded section near Brookville, Indiana.

A witness, who lived about 1/2 mile from the accident site, saw a plane fly over his farm property about 1730. He stated:

Was working on Ford tractor, when a small plane went over top, sound like it was missing out, then I hear tree tops being cut off, but there was kids playing with firework, we drop everything and went looking for the plane that was down, but we could not find it.

PERSONNEL INFORMATION

FAA records indicated that the pilot held a private pilot certificate with a rating for single-engine land airplanes. FAA records showed that the pilot applied for a third-class medical certificate that was issued on July 11, 2006. The medical certificate was issued with a limitation for corrective lenses. The pilot reported a total time of 325 hours of flight time of which 7 were within the six months prior to the application for the medical certificate.

The pilot's logbook indicated his flight review was completed on July 16, 2004. The logbook's last entry was dated June 21, 2005, and the entry prior was dated June 10, 2005, which indicated "1st flight of 2005." Both entries were in the accident airplane and their flight time added up to 2.3 hours. The logbook's total flight time entries added up to 325.1 hours.

AIRCRAFT INFORMATION

N8829U, a 1965 Cessna 172F, serial number 17252738, was an externally braced high-wing, propeller-driven, fixed landing gear, semi-monocoque design, four-seat airplane. A 145-horsepower, six-cylinder, air-cooled, horizontally opposed, carbureted, Continental O-300-D, serial number 29623-D-5-D, engine, powered the airplane. The propeller was a two-bladed, all-metal, fixed pitch, McCauley model 1C172/EM7650, with serial number E3470. The propeller was also marked with model number EM7653.

A copy of an excerpt from the airplane's logbooks showed that an annual inspection was completed on August 24, 2005. The airplane had accumulated 3,822.65 hours of total time at the date of the annual inspection. The logbooks listed a tachometer time of 548.4 hours at that inspection and a time since major engine overhaul of 1,633.4 hours.

The owner's manual, in part, stated:

FUEL SYSTEM

Fuel is supplied to the engine from two aluminum tanks, one in each wing. From these tanks, fuel flows by gravity through a selector valve and a strainer to the carburetor.

FAA Airworthiness Directive (AD) 79-10-14 R1, in part, stated:

Applies to the following Models and serial numbered airplanes, certificated in any category.

SERIES SERIAL NUMBERS

... 172 ... 17247747 through 17265684

Compliance: Required as indicated, unless already accomplished. To provide an alternate source of fuel tank venting in case of fuel tank vent obstruction by foreign material and/or sticking of the fuel vent valve, within the next 100 hours time-in-service after the effective date of this AD, accomplish the following: (A) Install applicable vented fuel cap(s) with related adapters and fuel servicing placards

METEOROLOGICAL INFORMATION

At 1750, the recorded weather at the Columbus Municipal Airport, near Columbus, Indiana, was: Wind 280 degrees at 7 knots; visibility 10 statute miles; sky condition clear; temperature 28 degrees C; dew point 17 degrees C; altimeter 30.00 inches of mercury.

At 1653, the recorded weather at the Shelbyville Municipal Airport, near Shelbyville, Indiana, was: Wind 240 degrees at 4 knots; visibility 10 statute miles; sky condition few clouds 4,400 feet above ground level; temperature 27 degrees C; dew point 18 degrees C; altimeter 29.97 inches of mercury.

WRECKAGE AND IMPACT INFORMATION

The airplane came to rest vertically on its nose between two trees near the edge of a clearing. The wings were attached to the fuselage. The outboard section of the right wing exhibited a semicircular crush. The flaps were retracted. The empennage was torn from the fuselage. The control cables to the empennage were intact. The fuel selector was positioned on both tanks. The emergency locator transmitter antenna was torn from its mounting.

An on-scene examination of the wreckage was conducted. Flight control cables were traced and their continuity was established. Engine control continuity was established. The flap's jackscrew position was consistent with retracted flaps. The tachometer indicated 550.0 hours and the Hobbs meter indicated 2,573.6 hours. The top spark plugs were removed. The removed spark plugs were dark in color and a dark media was present on the electrodes. The magnetos sparked at all of the top sparkplug leads. A thumb compression was observed at all cylinders. A liquid was found in both fuel tanks. A liquid was found in the gascolator, fuel line to the carburetor, and in the bottom of the carburetor fuel bowl. Air pressure was applied to both fuel tank lines and air was felt exiting the fuel line to the carburetor. The right fuel tank's vented fuel tank cap was opened and it contained debris in its vent holes. The left fuel tank's cap was non-vented. The fuel vent was found blocked. The vent was removed and opened. The vent exhibited a blockage of debris.

MEDICAL AND PATHOLOGICAL INFORMATION

The Franklin County Coroner's Office arranged for an autopsy to be performed on the pilot, which was conducted on July 26, 2006.

The FAA Civil Aeromedical Institute prepared a Final Forensic Toxicology Accident Report. The report stated:

0.24 (ug/ml, ug/g) CODEINE detected in Blood 179.785 (ug/ml, ug/g) CODEINE detected in Urine 3.277 (ug/ml, ug/g) MORPHINE detected in Urine MORPHINE NOT detected in Blood 0.139 (ug/mL, ug/g) TRAMADOL detected in Blood TRAMADOL present in Urine QUININE detected in Urine 14.28 (ug/ml, ug/g) ACETAMINOPHEN detected in Blood 461.1 (ug/ml, ug/g) ACETAMINOPHEN detected in Urine

The National Transportation Safety Board's Medical Officer, from the pilot's medical records maintained by the FAA Aerospace Medical Certification Division, extracted the following information and observation:

7/11/06 - Electronic record of the pilot's most recent Application for 3rd Class Medical Certificate indicated "yes" in response to "Do you currently use any medication" and indicated only "Advair [fluticasone]." The record also noted "yes" in response to "Medical History" queries regarding "Asthma or lung disease," "Stomach, liver, or intestinal problem," "Admission to hospital," and "Other illness, disability, or surgery." Under "Visits to Health Professional" is noted "7/1/06 ... knee problem ... ." Under "Comments" is noted, with regard to fluticasone, "no side effects." With regard to the positive medical history 1 responses above is noted, "... previously reported ... no change ..." and "...stomach ulcer 2005 ... ."

The FAA records did not note any FAA requests for or any provision of additional information regarding the pilot's asthma, stomach ulcers, arthritis, or surgery.

TESTS AND RESEARCH

The airplane's engine was shipped to Teledyne Continental Motors (TCM), Alabama, for an engine run. The engine sustained damage to its right intake manifold casting. The oil pan's drain was broken off. Ignition wires from the left and right magneto were damaged. The intake was replaced, the oil pan was repaired, and the separated ignition wires were reconnected.

The engine was mounted in a test cell on March 15, 2006. The engine was operational during a test run which concluded on March 16, 2006.

The liquid samples from the wreckage were taken to the 181st Fighter Wing, near Terre Haute, Indiana. That Air National Guard unit forwarded the fuel sample to the Aerospace Fuels Laboratory at Wright Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio. The laboratory tested the fuel and their report, in part, stated:

Aviation gasoline was examined in addition to solids collected in the fuel. Solids were mixtures ranging from carboxylates to esters of carboxylic acids with rust and cellulose fibers. The fuel was similar to a reference AVGAS sample although compositions depend upon the manufacturer and some variations were noted.

ADDITIONAL DATA/INFORMATION

The parties to the investigation included the FAA, TCM, and the Cessna Aircraft Company.

The aircraft wreckage was released to a representative of the insurance company.

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