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On January 5, 1995, at 1954 central standard time, a Piper PA-30, N8398Y, was destroyed following a loss of control near Georgetown, Texas. The airline transport rated pilot was fatally injured. Dark night instrument meteorological conditions prevailed throughout the area for the 14 CFR 91 positioning flight.
At approximately 0730 the airplane departed Miller International Airport (MFE), Mc Allen, Texas, on a 14 CFR 135 flight to Fort Smith Municipal Airport (FSM), Fort Smith, Arkansas. According to the enclosed load manifest, the airplane departed with 100 gallons of fuel. The airplane was fueled with 41 gallons of 100 octane low lead aviation gasoline at Fort Smith Municipal Airport. A copy of the fuel slip is enclosed.
The airplane departed Fort Smith with a destination of Laredo International Airport (LRD), Laredo, Texas. The pilot air-filed an instrument flight rules (IFR) flight plan and received an IFR clearance near Temple, Texas. The pilot reported level at 6,000 feet MSL to Austin Approach Control. A faint "Mayday" call was heard by a Southwest Airline pilot and reported to approach control. The controller reported radar contact and communications was lost with the airplane.
The wreckage was located on January 6, 1996, at 0830, 5 miles south of Georgetown, Texas.
A examination of the airframe and engine records by a Federal Aviation Administration inspector did not reveal any anomalies or uncorrected maintenance defects.
WRECKAGE AND IMPACT INFORMATION
The aircraft was located in the initial ground scar on a measured magnetic heading of 205 degrees. The left and right engines were buried in the ground at the initial scar. The left and right wing leading edges were crushed, and the right wing tip fuel tank was separated from the wing. The roof was separated from the cabin. The left horizontal stabilizer was separated and found 24 feet from the main wreckage. The empennage and fuselage were partially separated and displaced forward.
Both propeller assemblies were bent aft. The right propeller assembly was found separated at the propeller flange. It was noted that none of the propellers exhibited twisting, tip damage, or rotational scarring. The damage to the assemblies occurred during recovery.
Both fuel boost pump elements were separated from the motors and residual fuel was present. The 2 fuel selectors were loose, and their position could not be determined.
The investigation team examined the engines and found no anomalies that could account for a loss of power. See enclosed wreckage diagram for wreckage distribution details.
MEDICAL AND PATHOLOGICAL INFORMATION
The autopsy was performed by Roberto J. Bayardo, M.D., Office of the Medical Examiner of Travis County, Austin, Texas. In the opinion of Dr. Bayardo, the pilot "came to his death as a result of the injuries suffered from the airplane crash which was caused by the decedent having a heart attack." His report is attached. Toxicological findings were negative.
The airplane wreckage was released to the owner's representative.