NTSB Identification: WPR12CA129
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Sunday, March 11, 2012 in Santa Clarita, CA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 05/15/2012
Aircraft: STINSON 108-3, registration: N4143C
Injuries: 2 Minor.
NTSB investigators used data provided by various entities, including, but not limited to, the Federal Aviation Administration and/or the operator and did not travel in support of this investigation to prepare this aircraft accident report.
The airplane owner/pilot stated that he overflew the airstrip, which was oriented northeast/southwest in hilly terrain, and saw that the windsock indicated light wind from the southwest. He entered a left traffic pattern for a landing to the northeast (downwind). When the airplane was about halfway down the airstrip, it had still not touched down, and the pilot decided to abandon the landing attempt. He applied takeoff power, pitched and trimmed for a climb, established a positive rate of climb, and retracted the flaps. The airplane did not appear to be outclimbing the rising terrain, so the pilot increased the pitch attitude in an attempt to increase the climb rate. The stall warning sounded a few times, and, each time, the pilot readjusted the pitch as necessary to silence the warning. The pilot continued to fly the runway heading because he did not want to attempt any turns and thereby risk an aerodynamic stall. The airplane impacted terrain about 1.6 miles from and about 1,000 feet above the midpoint of the airstrip. A fire, first visible on the right side of the cowling near the battery, quickly ensued, which consumed the fuselage and wings. The pilot reported that he did not experience any mechanical conditions or failures that would have precluded normal operation.
The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be: The pilot's delayed decision to abandon the landing attempt, which resulted in the airplane colliding with rising terrain. Contributing to the accident was the pilot's decision to land with a tailwind. Full narrative available
Index for Mar2012 | Index of months