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N3257W accident description

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Tail numberN3257W
Accident dateJune 21, 1995
Aircraft typeSmith Monnett Moni
LocationCheraw, SC
Additional details: None

NTSB description

On June 21, 1995, at 1904 eastern daylight time, a George L.Smith Monnett Moni, N3257W, collided with trees and terrain following a reported loss of engine power near Cheraw, South Carolina. The private pilot was fatally injured, and the aircraft was destroyed. The homebuilt, experimental aircraft was operated under the provisions of 14 CFR Part 91 by the pilot. Visual meteorological conditions existed at the time, and no flight plan was filed for the local, personal flight. The flight originated at the Cheraw Municipal Airport, about 1904.

A witness reported that the aircraft was on the downwind leg at the Cheraw Airport, and had been airborne about three minutes. She heard the engine sputtering prior to the crash. The airplane turned toward the airport and "nose dived." She said the engine was not running. Another witness was airborne, having departed prior to the accident pilot so they could fly together. He reported seeing the airplane enter an uncontrolled descent and impact the ground.

A photograph of the wreckage, provided by the FAA inspector who visited the site, indicated aftward accordion-like damage from wing tip to wing tip. The nose of the airplane was crushed rearward, along the longitudinal axis of the fuselage.

After the accident, the airborne witness stated that he and the pilot had a discussion, prior to the flight, regarding the fuel/oil mixture for the two cycle engine. The pilot had stated that he believed that he had been using a mixture that was too lean.

A local mechanic inspected the airplane following the accident. He reported that the ignition system and flight controls checked satisfactorily. The spark plugs were clean. No fuel was discovered in the engine because the fuel tank had ruptured. He was unable to make any other determinations.

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