On February 5, 1994, at 1130 hours Pacific standard time, a Cessna 175, N7597M, and a Piper PA28-235, N6171J, collided on the runway while landing at the Oakdale, California, airport. Both aircraft were in the traffic pattern and landing on runway 10 when they collided near the approach end of the runway. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the accident and included a visibility of 5 miles in haze. Both aircraft incurred substantial damage.

The Cessna 175 was on a local area personal flight which had originated from the Oakdale airport about 1100 hours. The certificated private pilot, the sole occupant, was not injured.

The Piper PA28-235 was on a local area dual instructional flight which had originated from the Oakdale airport about 1030 hours. The certificated commercial pilot flight instructor and the dual primary student were not injured.

The pilot of the Cessna 175 stated that he departed the airport on a local proficiency flight, and then returned to the traffic pattern to practice takeoffs and landings. According to the pilot, he announced on the CTAF frequency of 122.8 his intentions and made broadcasts on downwind, base, and final approach. He stated that he heard the Piper call from over the airport at 3,000 feet AGL for a practice engine out approach and landing.

The pilot noted that he did not hear any further transmissions from the Piper. The pilot reported that he was just touching down on the approach end of the runway when he felt a jolt to his aircraft, then saw the Piper come down directly in front of his aircraft. Both aircraft then skidded to a stop on the runway.

The instructor on the Piper PA28-235 stated in a telephone interview that his student was being prepared for his private pilot check ride. After takeoff, they departed the traffic pattern, performed some airwork, then arrived over the airport at about 3,000 feet AGL. The instructor said that he wanted the student to demonstrate a simulated engine out emergency approach and landing. He reported that he announced his position and intentions on the CTAF frequency of 122.8, then began the procedure. He stated that he recalled hearing a Cessna report in the traffic pattern and began looking for the aircraft.

The instructor said that by the time the student had arrived at the key position, he spotted a Cessna on final approach and they planned to follow that aircraft. The instructor noted that the Cessna he was following was just starting to turn off the runway as they began to flare for landing. According to the instructor, he felt a "normal landing touchdown" on the runway, then the aircraft was skidding sideways through a ball of fire and came to a stop entangled with a Cessna aircraft.

The UNICOM radio operator at the airport's fixed base operator stated that he heard both aircraft. The Cessna pilot transmitted his position and intentions while on downwind, base, and final approach. The Piper pilot transmitted his position and intentions only once when the aircraft was 3,000 feet over the airport.

Airport personnel reported that they examined both aircraft. The damage to the Cessna 175 consisted of black rubber and blue paint transfers to the vertical stabilizer, rudder, top of the fuselage, and the upper surface of the wings. The left wing sustained slashes in the area of the fuel cell. The damage to the Piper was confined to the nose gear, lower engine cowling, and the bottom of the wings. The Piper paint scheme included blue paint trim on the wheel fairings.

Use your browsers 'back' function to return to synopsis
Return to Query Page