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N102ZT accident description

Oregon map... Oregon list
Crash location 43.238889°N, 123.355833°W
Nearest city Roseburg, OR
43.216505°N, 123.341738°W
1.7 miles away
Tail number N102ZT
Accident date 26 Jan 2014
Aircraft type Pitts S2C
Additional details: None

NTSB Factual Report

On January 26, 2014, about 1530 Pacific standard time, a Pitts S2C, N102ZT, collided with trees during the turn to final approach to runway 34 at Roseburg, Oregon. The pilot was operating the airplane under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 91. The commercial pilot was not injured. The airplane sustained substantial damage to the upper and lower wings. The local personal flight departed Roseburg about 1500. Visual meteorological conditions (VMC) prevailed, and no flight plan had been filed.

The pilot reported that he returned from a local flight, and entered the traffic pattern behind a much slower airplane. He observed a second (high-wing) airplane crossing from west to east on an apparent base about 1 mile south of the airport. The pilot made a right 360-degree turn on downwind for spacing. He noted that hilly terrain surrounded the airport. After reestablishing his position on downwind, he requested position reports from Roseburg area traffic. The first airplane reported clear of the runway; he heard no other position reports.

The pilot stated that he made a normal approach to the runway. Immediately prior to the turn to final, an unknown airplane transmitted that they were on final for runway 34. The pilot rolled wings level, and checked the final approach path for traffic. He observed none, and rolled back into a left turn to final with a shallow left forward slip. As the airplane rolled onto short final, it collided with the upper portion of a tall tree. The pilot landed the airplane successfully, and egressed from the airplane with no difficulties.

The pilot reported that the tree was about 60 feet higher than a utility pole near it, and encroached into the approach flight path for landing. He also reported that the tree was not lighted.

The FAA Digital Airport/Facility Directory indicated that runway 34 was 4,602 feet long and 100 feet wide. The runway surface was asphalt, and noted a displaced threshold of 371 feet for a tree, which was also depicted on the airport diagram.

NTSB Probable Cause

The pilot’s loss of orientation while scanning for airport traffic during the turn from the base to final legs of the traffic pattern, which resulted in his failure to maintain clearance from a tree.

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