NTSB Identification: CEN10FA448
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Friday, July 30, 2010 in Midlothian, TX
Probable Cause Approval Date: 10/04/2012
Aircraft: American Champion Aircraft Cor 7GCBC, registration: N5027G
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.

The flight instructor and student pilot were conducting local area flight training before departing on a night cross-country flight. The airplane was southbound on the south end of the airport when several witnesses observed the airplane flying erratically at low altitude. The witnesses observed that, after several maneuvers, the airplane was in a turn when it suddenly entered an almost vertical spiral into the ground. Postaccident examination of the airplane revealed no preaccident mechanical malfunctions or failures that would have precluded normal operations. An autopsy of the instructor revealed severe atherosclerosis of the right coronary artery with superimposed fresh-recent thrombus, suggesting an acute myocardial infarction (heart attack). The instructor’s most recent application for a second-class medical certificate noted “no” to all under “Medical History” including heart or vascular trouble. There was no indication that the instructor was aware of his heart disease. Such an acute event may have led to incapacitation of the instructor and distracted of the student pilot to the point of a loss of airplane control.

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

The flight instructor’s incapacitation due to preexisting but unrecognized coronary disease, and the student pilot’s distraction and inability to recover the airplane from a stall/spin at low altitude.

Full narrative available

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