On January 6, 1997, at 0733 hours Pacific standard time, a Cessna 182H, N1870X, was blown over by an estimated 50-knot wind gust while taxiing from landing at the Burbank, California, airport. The aircraft was operated by Dave Sonke Aviation of Bishop, California, and was on a positioning flight for a 14 CFR Part 135 revenue flight. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and a VFR flight plan was filed. The aircraft incurred substantial damage. The certificated airline transport pilot, the sole occupant, was not injured. The flight originated from Bishop on the day of the accident at 0615 as a positioning flight to Burbank.

The aircraft was cleared to land on runway 33 by the FAA Air Traffic Control Tower. At the time of the clearance, the pilot was advised that the winds were from 360 degrees at 45 knots. The aircraft completed the landing ground roll and was turning off at taxiway B-3 when the wind blew it over, damaging the propeller, right wing strut, vertical stabilizer, rudder, and left wing tip.

The pilot indicated in his written report that he "made a normal landing considering [the] conditions. . . . As I turned off runway at taxi speed (twy B3) a severe gust of wind lifted the right wing & tail & flipped the plane [on] to its back. . . . (I tried to turn into wind early, as the wing lifted, no dice. I also had the correct aileron input for the winds.) . . . Note: The gust of 50 + [knots] was the first of many during the rest of the morning. Until that point the winds were very manageable."

After exiting runway 33 by making an approximate 90-degree turn onto taxiway B3, the quartering 43-knot headwind on runway 33 became a direct crosswind that was calculated to be 25 knots. The wind calculations are based upon a reported wind of 300 degrees at 50 knots in the 0735 Burbank Airport Special Weather Observation report.

The 1965 model year Cessna 182H pilot's operating handbook contains no information regarding not-to-exceed crosswind velocities during landing or taxiing operations. In a telephone conversation with the aircraft manufacturer, it was determined that the demonstrated crosswind component for the Cessna 182H is 18 knots; however, no specific information regarding wind limits during taxi operations was available.

According to the manufacturer's information, at the time the accident occurred, the wind exceeded the aircraft's maximum demonstrated crosswind capability by 7 knots, or 28 percent.

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