NTSB Identification: LAX08FA092
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Wednesday, April 02, 2008 in Benson, AZ
Probable Cause Approval Date: 05/06/2009
Aircraft: BEECH 95-B55, registration: N20480
Injuries: 2 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.

A witness at the airport reported that the airplane's first approach for landing in dark night conditions appeared high and fast. Prior to touchdown, the pilot announced over the common traffic frequency that he was going around. During the second approach, which the witness reported as not as high and fast as the first approach, the airplane was about 10 feet above ground level when it passed the midfield point on the 4,000-foot runway. The witness lost sight of the airplane behind a hangar, but heard what sounded like a hard landing, followed by the sound of increasing engine sounds. The witness looked over the hangars and saw a green light (right wing tip) arc to the left as if the airplane were rolling inverted. The airplane collided with the ground in a near-inverted, slightly nose-down attitude and came to rest between the runway and the taxiway. Postcrash examination of the airframe and flight control systems found no anomalies. The left engine was examined and subsequently placed in a test cell. The engine started easily and ran smoothly at various rated power settings. The right engine was subject to a teardown inspection. The disassembly of the engine did not reveal any preexisting anomalies that would have precluded normal operation of the engine. Both propellers had impact marks on the spinner from contact with a counterweight while the blade/counterweight was at a low pitch position. There were no impact marks or other indications to suggest that either propeller was feathered. Both propellers were turning and were driven toward a lower blade angle at impact as evidenced by the damage to the low pitch stop. A review of the private pilot's flight logbook indicated the pilot had accumulated approximately 274 hours total flight time in all aircraft, with only 29 hours in the aircraft type and 5 hours of night flying experience logged.

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be:

The pilot's misjudged speed and altitude during approach that led to a long landing and his subsequent failure to maintain control during an attempted go-around. Contributing to the accident were the dark night, the pilot's low total night flight experience, and low total time in the make and model airplane.

Full narrative available

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