NTSB Identification: MIA05LA122.
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Accident occurred Sunday, June 12, 2005 in Chipley, FL
Probable Cause Approval Date: 08/30/2007
Aircraft: Highsmith Fergy FII B, registration: N456MH
Injuries: 2 Serious.
NTSB investigators may not have traveled in support of this investigation and used data provided by various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.
The pilot stated that during the takeoff-initial climb, about 200 feet above ground level, the engine's rpm was "slightly below normal." He confirmed the throttle position, and then initiated a left turn. The rpm began to gradually decrease, and he selected a clearing in an easement for a forced landing next to electrical power lines and trees. The airplane impacted the power lines, struck a tree with the left wing, and impacted the ground nose first. During a postaccident inspection, an FAA inspector established flight control continuity, and conducted an external check of the engine with no discrepancies noted. Fuel was present in the fuel system, and no defects were noted with the fuel system or the fuel. The pilot did a postaccident engine tear down examination. He stated he saw markings on the rear cylinder, consistent with it seizing during operation. The aluminum piston had scoring marks from the top to the bottom of the piston. The cylinder walls had light markings as well. He said he spoke with a Rotax authorized service facility, which informed him of reported cases of seized cylinders for undetermined reasons, and that after the engine cooled, the piston was able to move freely in the cylinder with a normal compression check afterwards.
The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be: The seizing of the rear engine cylinder during takeoff-initial climb, which resulted in a collision with power lines and structural damage to the airplane during the forced landing. Full narrative available
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