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N9137N accident description

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Crash location Unknown
Nearest city Muncie, IN
40.193377°N, 85.386360°W

Tail number N9137N
Accident date 08 Aug 1996
Aircraft type Piper PA-28-181
Additional details: None

NTSB description


On August 8, 1996, at an estimated time of 1020 eastern standard time (est), a Piper PA-28-181, N9137N was destroyed when the aircraft impacted with terrain following a loss of control near Muncie, Indiana. The airplane was found at approximately 1900 est time by the Civil Air Patrol. The certified flight instructor and the pilot rated passenger were fatally injured in the accident. The 14 CFR Part 91 flight was not operating on a flight plan, and instrument meteorological conditions prevailed, at the time of the accident.


A complete weather package was assembled by a weather specialist from the National Transportation Safety Boards Washington, DC. office, for the Muncie, Indiana area at 1020 est. A local law enforcement officer reported to the IIC thunderstorms and heavy rain showers around the time of 1000 est. The weather specialists report appears to agree with the law enforcement officers observation.


The airplane wreckage path followed a heading of approximately 280 degrees and was about 250 feet long. Both wings had separated from the aircraft in the accident. The right wing's landing gear was separated from the right wing. The horizontal stabilizer sustained crushing damage to both the left and right sides. All control surfaces were attached, and a review of the flight control system revealed no abnormalities. One propeller blade was bent under the engine next to the oil sump, the other propeller blade had a slight S shape with some chordwise scratches visible at the tip. The right side cabin door was found with the interior side facing upward. Water was found in the plexiglass area of the right side cabin door. The clock inside the airplane was stopped, and read 10:21.

Vegetation in the area of the first impact point appeared to have been contaminated with fuel. The right wing's fuel tank was ruptured, and no significant amount of fuel was found in the right wing. The left wing had sustained fuel tank damage, however the IIC approximated the tank as being three fourths full of fuel. Fuel was found in the fuel lines, the mechanical fuel pump and in the electric boost pump. The carburetor had separated from the oil sump however, when the throttle arm was moved fuel would pump out of the carburetor. The fuel valve was found in the right fuel tank position.


Autopsies were performed on both pilots at the Delaware County Coroners Office located in Muncie, Indiana, on August 9, 1996. The toxicological testing completed by the Federal Aviation Administration, in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, was negative for all samples tested.


A review of the airplane on August 9, 1996 found no abnormalities with any system or component.

The engine was separated from the airplane on August 9, 1996, and taken to the Indianapolis International Airport, for further examination. On August 10, 1996 all of the engine's cylinders had compression when tested. All valves moved when the engine was rotated. The vacuum pump rotated freely, and produced vacuum when rotated. Both the electric and mechanical fuel pump would pump water when tested. Both magnetos produced spark when rotated. No signs of oil starvation or contamination were noted. The engine's suction screen and oil filter were free from contamination when checked. The finger screen in the carburetor was clean with no contamination found. The spark plugs appeared to be worn excessively.


Parties to the investigation were The New Piper Aircraft Corporation, and Textron Lycoming Engines.

(c) 2009-2018 Lee C. Baker / Crosswind Software, LLC. For informational purposes only.