KING O' THE WEB!

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Saturday, June 27, 2009

Moblog: Crashed Plane On Truck

A small aviation mess

UPDATE:
NTSB Identification: ERA09LA368
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Thursday, June 25, 2009 in Woodbine, NJ
Aircraft: PITTS AEROBATICS S-2B, registration: N300FA
Injuries: 1 Minor.

This is preliminary information, subject to change, and may contain errors. Any errors in this report will be corrected when the final report has been completed.

On June 25, 2009 at 1815 eastern daylight time, a Pitts S-2B, N300FA, was substantially damaged during a forced landing in Woodbine, New Jersey. The certificated private pilot received serious injuries. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and no flight plan was filed for the flight that originated at Laurence Hanscom Field (BED), Bedford, Massachusetts. The personal flight was conducted under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91.

The accident airplane and another airplane (Extra 300L) were a flight of two, destined for Wildwood Airport (WWD), in Wildwood, New Jersey for an aerobatic competition.

The pilot of the Extra 300L departed from Lawrence (LWM), Massachusetts around 1500 and he thought the accident pilot departed Bedford around the same time. They met near Minuteman Airfield (6B6), Stow, Massachusetts at 3,000 feet, in "loose formation" for the flight to Wildwood. While en route, the aircraft climbed to 8,500 feet and flew direct toward Wildwood, at an airspeed of approximately 175 knots. When they were approximately 40 miles north of WWD, the aircraft initiated a descent to 3,000 feet. The pilot of the Extra 300L was flying in trail of the accident pilot and noticed something was wrong when the accident airplane slowed down, and he passed him. The accident airplane began to descend and fly toward the Woodbine Municipal Airport (OBI), Woodbine, New Jersey. The pilot of the Extra 300L called the accident pilot on the radio and asked him what the problem was; however, he did not respond. The pilot of the Extra 300L circled the accident airplane twice, as he continued to descend. When the airplane was approximately 1 mile from Woodbine Airport, the accident pilot stated over the radio, "I'm not going to make it," and subsequently impacted trees.

The pilot of the Extra 300L could no longer see the aircraft and decided to land at the Woodbine Airport. After landing, he drove to the accident site. When he arrived on scene he asked the accident pilot if he "ran out of fuel." The accident pilot responded, "I think so."

According to the pilot of the Extra 300L, they did not make any fuel stops enroute. He also stated that because his airplane had more fuel onboard than the accident airplane, he let the accident pilot take the lead position. He reported this would allow the accident pilot to land if he needed to refuel.

Examination of the airplane by a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) inspector revealed substantial damage to the fuselage and wings. The upper wing fuel tank contained approximately 3-5 gallons of fuel, and no fuel was observed in the lower wing (main) fuel tank. The fuel lines from the fuel servo contained "residual fuel." The fuel selector was observed in the "on" position. The fuel transfer valve (which transferred fuel from the upper wing fuel tank to the lower wing (main) fuel tank) was in the "off" position.

Weather recorded at WWD, at 1755, included wind from 160 degrees at 8 knots, 10 miles visibility, clear skies, temperature 23 degrees C, dew point 17 degrees, and altimeter 29.80 inches mercury.


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