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On May 21, 1994, at 1605 central daylight time, a Tri-Q 200, owned and operated by William G. McBryde of Kilgore, Texas, impacted the ground immediately after takeoff from Joplin Municipal Airport, Joplin, Missouri. The airplane was destroyed by impact and the post-crash fire. The non-certificated, non- student pilot was fatally injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the accident and no flight plan was filed. The flight was conducted under 14 CFR Part 91 as a personal flight immediately following purchase of the airplane.
The pilot had obtained a third class medical certificate on April 23, 1985. On the medical application he indicated a total of 450 hours of civilian flight time. No record existed of the pilot in command ever having obtained any pilot certifications or student certificate.
The airplane was originally built and owned by the seller in 1989, and had not been inspected since. The airplane had a history of fuel contamination and high engine operating temperatures, had been involved in an earlier loss of power accident, and had only accumulated 21 hours total time according to the aircraft logs.
The seller stated that the airplane had not flown in over 1 year, that 2 weeks prior to the sale he advised the pilot in command not to fly the airplane but to trailer it home, and that he did not feel the pilot was qualified to fly. The aircraft had been disassembled and the tail cone removed for loading on a trailer, but the pilot stated he wanted to run the engine and taxi the aircraft, so it was reassembled.
WRECKAGE AND IMPACT INFORMATION
The airplane reportedly contacted the ground at a steep angle. It struck a steel sign with concrete reinforcements approximately 500 feet from the departure end of the runway. The carburetor and fuel strainer were torn from the engine. With the exception of the engine and small pieces of wing and tail, the airplane was consumed by the post crash fire. Post crash investigation revealed engine continuity.
MEDICAL AND PATHOLOGICAL INFORMATION
An autopsy was not performed and toxicology tests were unable to be performed due to a lack of suitable tissue and fluid samples.
A post crash fire occurred, consuming the majority of the airplane.
Several witnesses described the pilot taxiing the aircraft to the fuel pumps and the engine stopping twice during taxi. The pilot added 12.5 gallons of fuel into the filler cap and was unable to locate the second fuel tank, which was a header tank and required internal transfer from a fuel pump to fill. Line personnel stated that fuel gauges showed one full and one empty. No witnesses stated seeing the pilot check the fuel tank sumps. The pilot then taxied back to the hangar, paid for the airplane and taxied for takeoff.
Several witnesses, including tower personnel, described the aircraft takeoff, descend while still over the runway, then climb again. Beyond the runway end, the airplane again began to descend, entered a left bank and impacted the ground in a nose low attitude. After impact the airplane was destroyed by fire.
The Gladewater, Texas Police Department contacting officer stated that he notified the pilot's son (next of kin) at the Gladewater, Texas airport where the son was awaiting the arrival of the pilot in the newly purchased airplane.
The pilot's sister stated to a Federal Aviation Administration investigator that the pilot had owned a Cessna 150 and had not had a pilot certificate.