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N947V accident description

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Crash location Unknown
Nearest city Columbus, NE
41.438623°N, 97.345041°W

Tail number N947V
Accident date 15 Jul 2000
Aircraft type Beech 35
Additional details: None

NTSB description


On July 15, 2000, at 1830 central daylight time, a Beech model 35, N947V, piloted by a private pilot was destroyed after impacting power lines and terrain near Columbus, Nebraska. The personal 14 CFR Part 91 flight was not on a flight plan. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the accident. The pilot, who was the sole occupant, was fatally injured. The departure and destination points have not been determined.

Witnesses to the accident reported that the aircraft was flying at a low altitude when it hit the power lines. One witness stated that he had seen the aircraft "...flying low one time before down river."


The pilot was born on July 10, 1977 and was the holder of a private pilot certificate issued on June 12, 1999. The pilot also held a third class medical certificate dated April 01, 1999. At the time of the medical examination, the pilot reported having 22 hours total time. A relative of the pilot estimated that the pilot had 400 hours total flight time and 200 hours in the accident airplane.


The airplane was a Beechcraft model 35, N947V, serial number D-880. The aircraft logbooks indicated that an annual inspection was performed on January 20, 2000, at an aircraft total time of 3,681.7 hours and a recording tachometer time of 480.1 hours. At the time of the accident, the recording tachometer read 639.8 hours. The engine was a Continental model E-185-8, serial number 20631-D-0-8. According to the logbooks, the engine was last overhauled on November 19, 1981, at a total engine time of 3,899.0 hours. The engine was installed on the airframe at a total airframe time of 3201.6 hours.


A weather reporting station located about 4 miles north of the accident site recorded the weather at 1855 as: Wind 120 degrees at 9 knots; Visibility 10 statute miles; Sky condition clear; Temperature 88 degrees Fahrenheit; Dew point 72 degrees Fahrenheit; Altimeter setting 29.82 inches of mercury.

A computer program was used to determine the azimuth and elevation of the sun at the time of the accident by inputting the latitude and longitude of the accident site along with the date and time. At the time of the accident, the azimuth was 276.4 degrees and the elevation was 25.9 degrees.


A postaccident examination of the wreckage was conducted. The aircraft came to rest on a sand bar located in the middle of the Loup River. The wreckage path started about 100 feet from a set of approximately 60-foot high power lines. The wreckage path was oriented on an approximately 260-degree magnetic heading. The main wreckage was located about 440 feet from the power lines. Smaller pieces of wreckage were located between the power lines and the main wreckage.

The aircraft was equipped with a "V-tail" empennage. The tail surfaces were examined and both were found to have leading edge damage at the mid-span location. The leading edge skins of both surfaces were torn and exhibited longitudinal scratches back to the spar/stringer location. The entire tail assembly was broken loose from the airframe at the mount. The tail assembly was found about halfway between the power lines and the main wreckage.

No anomalies, with regard to the airframe, were detected that could be associated with a preexisting condition.

The lower set of spark plugs was removed from the engine and no anomalies were noted. The forward two valve covers were removed and the valves and rocker arms were examined with no anomalies detected. The fuel screen was examined and no evidence of blockage was detected. No anomalies, with regard to the engine or engine accessories, were detected that could be associated with a preexisting condition.

The flight control system was examined and all cable breaks exhibited evidence consistent with tensile overload. No anomalies, with regard to the flight control system, were detected that could be associated with a preexisting condition.


An autopsy was performed at the Douglas County Hospital, Douglas County, Nebraska.

A toxicology report from the Federal Aviation Administration lists negative results for all tests performed.


Parties to the investigation were the Federal Aviation Administration, Lincoln, Nebraska and Raytheon Aircraft Company, Wichita, Kansas.

The wreckage was released on July 16, 2000.

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