On November 2, 1996, at 1352 eastern standard time, a Frost RAF 2000 GTX SE (Gyroplane), N914VT, received substantial damage on impact with the terrain following contact between the main rotor system, the pusher propeller and other portions of the airframe. The accident occurred about two miles southeast of Adrian, Michigan. The student pilot sustained fatal injuries. The personal 14 CFR Part 91 flight was operating in visual meteorological conditions. No flight plan was on file. The flight departed Adrian, Michigan, about 1345 en route to an unknown destination in Ohio. Use your browsers 'back' function to return to synopsisReturn to Query Page
Witnesses to the accident stated that the gyroplane was flying from north to south. Two witnesses stated that the aircraft was observed to pitch nose up and down several times at which time parts were seen to depart and the gyroplane impacted the terrain. According to a witness interviewed by the Lenawee County Sheriff's Deputy, he thought the pilot might be doing "tricks."
One individual at the Lenawee County Airport, Adrian, Michigan, said that the gyroplane had been based at that airport by the pilot/owner; however, on the day of the accident the pilot had arrived in an airplane with the intention of flying the gyroplane to an undetermined location in Ohio.
According to the logbook found in the gyroplane after the accident, the aircraft had a total time of 19 hours. The pilot was the holder of a student pilot certificate and he had accumulated 8.8 hours experience in the accident aircraft. All of this time was dual with no solo endorsement from an instructor recorded in his logbook and no solo time logged.
The "Experimental Operating Limitations" issued to the amateur built gyroplane are attached to this report. These limitations indicate that all flights prior to the aircraft reaching 40 hours of operation, must be conducted within 25 miles of the Lenawee County Airport. The limitations also stipulate that the pilot-in-command must hold an appropriate rating or have a flight instructor's logbook endorsement.
Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) investigator's found no mechanical anomalies in the wreckage which they could associate with a pre-existing condition.
An autopsy of the pilot was conducted at the Bixby Medical Center, Adrian, Michigan, on November 3, 1996. No pre-existing pathological conditions were found. A toxicological examination of specimens from the pilot were examined by the FAA Civil Aeromedical Institute. The tests were negative for drugs screened.