MIA96LA183
MIA96LA183

On July 13, 1996, about 0615 central daylight time, a Rockwell S2R, N3695X, operated by Gary Flying Service Inc., operating as a 14 CFR Part 137, aerial application flight, crashed during a forced landing near Belzoni, Mississippi. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and no flight plan was filed. The airplane was destroyed. The commercial pilot was not injured.

The flight had taken off for the purpose of performing an aerial application. At an altitude of about 150 feet mean sea level, the pilot stated that he noticed "a partial power loss." The pilot was about to turn back to the airstrip, when the engine made a "loud bang" and lost complete power. The pilot elected to land in a cotton field. According to his statement, "...[the pilot] immediately nosed [the airplane] over to maintain airspeed and at the last second before impact pulled hard back on the stick to raise nose before impact." The tail struck the ground first, the airplane bounced twice, turned to the west, and came to a stop approximately 200 feet from the touchdown point. The airplane crashed about 1 3/4 miles from the departure point. The airplane's engine had about 200 hours of service since being overhauled.

On July 23, 1996, the FAA had the operator of the airplane tear down the engine. The teardown revealed that the cylinder No.5, skirt had "broken," resulting in metal pieces spreading throughout the crankcase, and the oil system, causing the oil scavenger pump to fail. According to the teardown report that was submitted by Gary Flying Service, and the facts concurred with by the FAA, "...[the] inspection determined probable metal fatigue on No.5 cylinder skirt [was] the cause of the engine failure."

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