NTSB Identification: FTW00FA072.
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Accident occurred Friday, January 21, 2000 in MEXIA, TX
Probable Cause Approval Date: 07/17/2001
Aircraft: Beech 95-B55, registration: N3MT
Injuries: 1 Fatal.
NTSB investigators either traveled in support of this investigation or conducted a significant amount of investigative work without any travel, and used data obtained from various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.
The private pilot radioed to the fixed base operator (FBO) stating that he didn't have a green landing gear light; however, the mechanical indicator was showing the nose gear in the extended position. The pilot elected to fly the twin-engine airplane over the runway, past the FBO, so that two pilot-rated witnesses could check the landing gear. The witnesses stated that the airplane flew by at a 'very slow airspeed,' and the landing gear appeared to be in the extended position. The witnesses added that they observed the airplane initiate a climb and gradual turn to the left. They stated that they heard a 'small amount of power being added to the engines, but not full power.' Both witnesses stated that the 'engines sounded good and the airplane appeared to be under control.' Other witnesses, located south of the accident site, stated that they observed the airplane climbing and then turning to the left. The airplane was described as making a steep turn to the left followed by it spinning to the ground. The airplane had vortex generators, which lower the airplane's stall speed, installed 9 days prior to the accident. The pilot's flight instructor stated that the pilot 'had not practiced stalls recently,' and had not practiced stalls in the airplane since the vortex generators were installed. He added that the pilot never practiced full stalls in the airplane. No pre-accident anomalies were noted during examination of the airplane and engines. The landing gear actuator was found in the extended position.
The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be: The pilot's failure to maintain airspeed while maneuvering in the traffic pattern, which resulted in a stall/spin. Factors were the partial failure of the landing gear indication system and the pilot's diverted attention. Full narrative available
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