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N714FX accident description

Arkansas map... Arkansas list
Crash location Unknown
Nearest city Armorel, AR
35.920074°N, 89.798138°W
Tail number N714FX
Accident date 11 Aug 1995
Aircraft type Cessna 150M
Additional details: None

NTSB Factual Report


On August 11, 1995, at 1930 central daylight time, a Cessna 150M, N714FX collided with terrain while maneuvering near Armorel, Arkansas. The private pilot/owner and passenger received fatal injuries and the airplane was destroyed. The airplane was operated as a personal flight under Title 14 CFR Part 91. The flight originated in Blytheville, Arkansas, about 5 minutes the accident. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed for the flight and a flight plan was not filed.

Local authorities and witnesses reported that the airplane was fueled and inspected by the pilot prior to his original departure flight from the Blytheville Municipal Airport. The airplane was observed landing at the pilot's farm on his private grass airstrip at approximately 1745. The pilot and passenger boarded the airplane and the flight departed to the east at approximately 1925.

A witness (statement enclosed) described "the plane involved in a spin with the nose pointed toward the ground and the tail of the plane was spinning." He further reported that the "plane made 3 to 4 spins before hitting the ground." The airplane came to rest approximately 1 mile west of the Mississippi River.


A review of the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) records (enclosed) revealed that the pilot was issued a third class medical certificate on September 27, 1994. On the medical application the pilot answered "NO" to medical history Block 18 Item "U" for admission to hospital and did not admit previous surgery.

A review of the pilot's flight logbook (copies enclosed) by the investigator-in-charge revealed the following pilot-in-command flight entries. April 28, 1995, "bombs practice 2 passes 1 drop." May 20, 1995, "hammerheads." June 6, 1995, "bomb run." Entries included river tour (LL) pilotage, river run (LL) pilotage, and boat tour.


The maintenance records airframe and engine logbooks did not reveal any anomalies or uncorrected maintenance defects.

Engine logbook (enclosed copies) entries for oil changes were signed by the owner under his student pilot certificate number. FAA regulations (copies enclosed) requires at least a Private Pilot Certificate for the performance of preventive maintenance by an owner. Other entries, including installation and removal of the starter and replacement of a valve guide, were signed by the owner after obtaining the Private Pilot Certificate.


The airplane came to rest on a measured magnetic heading of 170 degrees in the wet terrain overflow levee area along the west bank of the Mississippi River. The right wing tip and leading edge of the right wing were crushed aft. The empennage was twisted to the right and the right horizontal stabilizer was bent upward. Front cylinders of the engine and the propeller were buried in the ground. The cockpit area and door frames were compressed toward the instrument panel. Both control yokes were separated and broken on the right side. See the enclosed wreckage diagram.

The fuel selector was destroyed and both fuel tanks were compromised; however, fuel was found in the left fuel tank and the carburetor bowl. The carburetor was found separated from the engine and the carburetor air box was crushed against the carburetor. Engine continuity was confirmed to the cylinders and the accessory gears. The engine was examined and compression was noted for cylinders #1, #2, and #3. The exhaust push rod on the #4 cylinder sustained impact damage and was holding the exhaust valve open. Both magnetos sparked at all terminals. The propeller spinner was crushed aft and one propeller blade exhibited chordwise scratches, twisting, and bending. Scratches were noted on the other propeller blade.

Investigation did not reveal any evidence of airframe or system failure/malfunction or lack of control continuity.


The autopsy was performed by Frank J. Peretti, M. D., of the Arkansas State Crime Laboratory at Little Rock, Arkansas. According to the pathologists, there was evidence of extensive previous chest and abdominal surgeries as a result of a motor vehicle accident. Related medical records (enclosed) were obtained by the investigator-in-charge and reviewed by the pathologists and the FAA Southwest Regional Flight Surgeon, G. J. Salazar, M. D.

Toxicological testing was conducted by the FAA Civil Aeromedical Institute (CAMI) at Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. The toxicology was positive for marihuana (0.008 ug/ml blood; 0.059 ug/ml in urine), methamphetamine (1.150 ug/ml blood; 14.600 ug/ml urine), and amphetamine (0.047 ug/ml blood; 0.372 ug/ml urine). According to Dr. Canfield of CAMI, the level of methamphetamine would "likely cause significant impairment of judgment in the cockpit."

During telephone interviews, conducted by the investigator-in- charge, the pilot's mother revealed that the pilot was involved in a lethal automobile accident in 1982 and spent 7 months in the hospital for numerous surgeries. Since June, 1995, the pilot was tired a lot, not feeling well, had lost weight, and had problems eating and swallowing and to her knowledge the pilot was not on medication. She further stated that the pilot had a problem swallowing because it had to go by gravity since the surgical removal of the esophagus which was replaced by a portion of the intestine. She stated that the pilot would cough hard as if strangled when food backed up into the esophagus.

The mother submitted to the investigator-in-charge a note (enclosed) from the passenger and a tape, which she stated came from the pilot's answering machine, on which the passenger "was threatening her son." The mother described the pilot as "wanting to get away from the relationship with the passenger who was obsessed with the son." The mother further stated the passenger and the medical situation were "tension for her son."

During a telephone interview, conducted by the investigator-in- charge, the coroner stated that the passenger injuries included a "bruise in the web area between the thumb and the forefinger."

Local sheriff authorities reported that the passenger had a history of drug abuse. They further stated that personnel from the sheriff's office had responded to the pilot's residence numerous times on domestic disturbances.


The airplane was released to the owner's representative.

NTSB Probable Cause


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