NTSB Identification: WPR12LA442
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Sunday, September 30, 2012 in Safford, AZ
Probable Cause Approval Date: 11/06/2013
Aircraft: AIR CREATION TANARG, registration: N2751N
Injuries: 1 Fatal.

NTSB investigators may not have traveled in support of this investigation and used data provided by various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

While flying in loose formation with another airplane to the destination airport, the accident airplane descended to about 400 feet above ground level. The pilot subsequently advised the pilot of the other airplane that the wind had become stronger and was affecting his airplane’s controllability. He added that he might attempt to land or consider returning to the departure airport. Shortly thereafter, the airplane made a descending right turn and impacted the ground.

An examination of the wreckage revealed that the airplane was equipped with a nonstandard, smaller wing and was trimmed to the near full nose-down position, which would increase the airplane’s stall speed. According to the wing manufacturer, the nonstandard wing has controllability problems at high speeds. Surface weather observations reported wind gusting to 22 knots near the time of the accident. The combination of the nonstandard wing, which reduced controllability, the full nose-down trim, which increased the stall speed, and the high wind gusts resulted in the pilot’s failure to maintain control of the airplane.

Postmortem toxicological testing of specimens from the pilot indicated the recent use of marijuana. Although the levels were such that the use may have been impairing, the actual effects on the flight could not be determined.

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

The pilot’s failure to maintain airplane control while maneuvering in high wind conditions and his failure to adjust the trim appropriately. Contributing to the accident was the airplane’s nonstandard modified wing configuration.

Full narrative available

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