On December 26, 1994, at 1130 Alaska standard time, a wheel equipped Cessna 140 airplane, N89870, registered to William N. Sigler of Little Campbell Creek, Alaska, and operated by the pilot, crashed during landing at Tok, Alaska. The personal flight, operating under 14 CFR Part 91, last departed Tok and was flying toward the Canadian Border. The airplane returned to Tok due to weather. No flight plan was filed and visual meteorological conditions prevailed. The commercial certificated pilot and the passenger were not injured and the airplane was substantially damaged. Use your browsers 'back' function to return to synopsisReturn to Query Page
According to Ron Sakalaskas, who was driving on the highway toward Tok, he saw the airplane flying low and enter the clouds. Mr. Sakalaskas turned his vehicle around and followed the airplane. He saw the airplane fly in and out of clouds numerous times. He last saw the airplane "turning with a high angle of bank and sinking." When Mr. Sakalaskas arrived at the Tok Airport he saw the airplane upside in a snow bank.
FAA Inspector Cliff Smart visited the accident site the next morning and found all the leading edge surfaces of the airplane covered with approximately 1/8 inch of rime ice. Mr. Smart also examined the cargo that was unloaded by Mr. Sakalaskas. The airplane contained the following:
Full fuel 150 pounds fuel can 66 pounds pilot 140 pounds passenger 180 pounds 2 sleeping bags 10 pounds heavy bag of food 10 pounds 2 backpacks est 25 ea 50 pounds subtotal = 606 pounds
estimated airplane empty weight = 1000 pounds total gross weight = 1606 pounds
Certificated maximum gross weight = 1450 pounds
These calculations show the airplane's gross weight to be 156 pounds over the certificated maximum gross weight.
The Pilot stated he received a weather briefing which indicated the presence of low fog and stratus in the area. He stated that the visibility below the clouds was good.
According to Airman Records, FAA, Oklahoma City, the Pilot showed 500 hours of total flight time on his last application for a medical certificate.