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On May 30, 1994, at 1010 eastern daylight time, a Beech 58P, N36LC, collided with terrain after a runway overshoot in Burnsville, North Carolina. The private pilot and one passenger were seriously injured, while another passenger had minor injuries. The aircraft was destroyed. The aircraft was operated under 14 CFR Part 91 by the pilot. Visual meteorological conditions existed at the time, and an instrument flight rules flight plan was filed for the personal flight to the Mountain Air Country Club in Burnsville. The flight originated in Salisbury, North Carolina at 0922.
The pilot's wife, who was seated in the front, right cockpit seat, reported the following: Prior to landing, her husband contacted the airport on unicom frequency and was given wind information and a description of the runway layout. She stated that her husband had not landed on this airstrip previously. Her husband put the landing gear down and prepared to land. After the airplane landed, it did not seem that they were slowing down quickly enough, and they were approaching the end of the runway. He realized that there was no more room remaining, and he pulled back to take off again. The engines powered back up, and they sounded like they would during a normal takeoff. She then realized they had crashed. She also stated that the airplane probably landed long, and that this airplane does require a lot of runway.
Several witnesses heard or saw the airplane during the accident sequence. One witness was a pilot of 18 years, with 1,020 hours of flying time. He was on his front porch balcony, which overlooks the runway, and is 65 feet higher than the runway. He heard the airplane on final approach for landing, and heard what he thought was a higher than normal rpm for an airplane in the landing phase. He shouted to his wife, "This guy is really coming in hot." He also observed it to be breezy at the time, with a significant tailwind for the landing runway (runway 32). The airplane touched down adjacent to the south end of the pond next to the runway (later measured to be approximately 1,500 feet from the approach end of runway 32). He observed braking action to be immediate: on, then off, then steady on, followed by an engine surge, then a crash. He responded to the scene, and arrived at the airplane about 1 to 2 minutes later. He shut off the magneto switches, and noted that the propeller and engine controls were in the "full forward" position.
Another witness was working on the golf course when the airplane landed. He reported that the airplane touched down at least half way down the runway. He thought to himself, "That guy is in trouble." Other witnesses heard the engine sound increase just prior to the crash.
Information on the pilot is included in this report at the section titled "First Pilot Information." The pilot obtained his biennial flight review through the Federal Aviation Administration "Wings" program. His last Wings flight was a four hour, dual instruction flight conducted in March of 1993. The pilot had logged about 485 hours in Beech 58 airplanes prior to the accident.
Information on the aircraft is included in this report at the section titled "Aircraft Information."
Visual meteorological conditions existed at the time of the accident. Meteorological information is included in this report at the section titled "Weather Information."
WRECKAGE AND IMPACT INFORMATION
The wreckage was found on a golf course construction area, located about 200 feet beyond the departure end of runway 32 at the Mountain Air Resort. The area between the departure end of runway 32 and the wreckage consisted of a steep, downhill grade, an asphalt access road, and a gravel access road. The elevation of the wreckage was about 125 feet below the elevation of the departure end of runway 32.
A pair of black skid marks were observed on the runway, beginning about 1,679 feet from the approach end of runway 32. The marks were measured to be the same distance apart as the published wheel base of the accident aircraft. The marks varied in darkness throughout their length, but visibly extended past the edge of the runway surface, at the departure end. The set of marks gradually curved to the right side of runway 32, with the left mark located about 20 feet to the right side of the runway centerline when the marks ended at the runway edge. There were black transfer marks, again the same distance apart as the wheelbase of the accident airplane, observed on the rocks which lined the gravel access road, down the slope from the runway end.
Impact damage was observed on an asphalt access road, located about 55 feet from the main wreckage. There were two sets of slashing signatures cut into the asphalt. The two sets of slashes were measured to be the same approximate distance apart as the propeller assemblies (when attached to the engines) on the accident aircraft.
The major structural sections of the airplane remained intact. All three landing gear assemblies were broken from the airframe. Both propeller assemblies were broken away from the engines, immediately aft of the crankshaft flanges. The blades of both propeller assemblies exhibited "s" bending, twisting toward low pitch, and chordwise scratching marks.
The nose section of the fuselage was crushed aft, as were the engine nacelles and cowling. There was evidence of fire at the aft portion of the left engine, and a fuel line connection (near the left engine firewall) was stretched, and was leaking fuel. The fuselage was buckled in several areas.
The disc-type brakes from the main gear were disassembled and inspected. The brake pads were intact, and had a glazed appearance on the surface. There was approximately 1/8 to 3/16 inches (thickness) of brake material remaining on the pads.
TESTS AND RESEARCH
The engines were removed from the airframe and examined at an aircraft wreckage storage facility in Griffin, Georgia. Due to impact damage, the right engine starter was removed and fitted to the left engine. The starter was energized, and the engine was turned through. Internal engine continuity was confirmed, as was continuity to the accessory drive area. Compression was observed on all cylinders. The starter was then removed, and refitted to the right engine. The same results were observed on the right engine as were seen on the left engine. All top spark plugs from both engines were normal in color and wear as compared to a manufacturer's inspection chart. Both magnetos from each engine operated satisfactorily on a test bench.
The wreckage was released to:
James T. Brewer (Owner's Representative) THG-Inflight Aviation Adjustment Group P.O. Box 25788 Charlotte, North Carolina 28229-5788.