On August 9, 1998, approximately 1115, central daylight time, a Cessna 152 airplane, N69269, owned and operated by the pilot, was substantially damaged when it impacted terrain while maneuvering near Hayes, Louisiana. The private pilot, who was the sole occupant, received serious injuries. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and no flight plan was filed for the Title 14 CFR Part 91 personal flight. The flight originated from the Lake Charles Municipal Airport, Lake Charles, Louisiana, about 1 hour and 15 minutes prior to the accident. Use your browsers 'back' function to return to synopsisReturn to Query Page
A local law enforcement officer arrived at the accident site, secured the area, and interviewed two eye witnesses to the accident. Both witnesses told the officer that they were working on an oil rig located approximately 100 to 150 yards from the accident site. They stated that they observed a small aircraft "flying around" the area (recently cut rice field with levees) "taking pictures" of the oil rig for about 1 hour. Both witnesses stated that they noticed the aircraft "make a wide loop, flying extremely close to the ground, as if the pilot was looking for a place to land." They further stated that they observed the airplane "hit a dirt levee located in the field, causing the airplane to flip over and land upside down." One of the witnesses "ran" to the aircraft and informed the other to call "911."
In a separate written statement, the witness who "ran" to the aircraft, stated that he could hear the aircraft prior to the impact, and "thought it was having engine problems." He further stated that the airplane was "going up and down like [the pilot] was trying to control it, but couldn't. Then the plane went down."
The law enforcement officer stated in his written accident report that he noticed "heavy damage to the wings, tail fin, and cabin." He stated that the aircraft wreckage was located approximately 30 yards from "where it first hit the levee." He further stated that "the airplanes propeller was located on the levee that the plane hit."
An inspector from the FAA arrived at the accident site on August 10, 1998, and examined the wreckage. He reported the following information to the NTSB. The aircraft laying upside down next to a levee. The nose landing gear was bent rearward and partially attached to the fuselage. The trailing edge flaps appeared to be in the "ten degree down" position. The propeller was broken off from the crankshaft propeller flange. Both propeller blades were found attached to the hub assembly, with one blade bent about 90 degrees aft, two thirds from the blade root. The second propeller blade exhibited a "S" bend along its span. The propeller spinner was crushed rearward. The cabin section and wings (including flaps and ailerons) were mostly intact, and the aft section of the fuselage was bent and wrinkled downward. Both horizontal and vertical stabilizers were attached to the tail with the rudder and elevators intact.
The FAA inspector further reported he found fuel in both of the wing tanks, and fuel was present in the fuel line from the airframe fuel filter to the carburetor. The carburetor mixture control cable was found pulled out of the mixture control arm. The carburetor was removed and disassembled. Both left and right magnetos were removed and produced spark when rotated by hand. The top 4 spark plugs were removed. Two of the plugs had oil on the electrodes, and two of the plugs were dry. The rocker box covers were removed and valve action was noted. All 4 pistons showed movement when the crankshaft was rotated by hand.
After the owners representative recovered the wreckage to a hangar (Lyons Flying Service, Welch, Louisiana), the FAA inspector and a representative from Textron Lycoming conducted a test run of the engine. Prior to the run, Lyons Flying Service reinstalled the right and left magnetos (right magneto cleaned by shop air), reinstalled the top spark plugs (cleaned by shop air), reassembled and installed the carburetor, added 2 quarts of oil, straightened and installed the crankshaft propeller flange, and straightened and installed the propeller.
The engine was tested while attached to the airframe, utilizing the cockpit throttle controls. The engine was started by turning the propeller by hand, and operated normally for about 10 minutes up to a maximum of 2,400 rpm during the test.
According to entries annotated in the pilot's personal logbook, the 72 year old pilot had a total of 1,734 hours of flight time in the airplane (N69269). [Logbook entries covered dates from August 9, 1989, through August 2, 1998.]
The pilot's representative forwarded NTSB Form 6120.1/2, however, the pilot's serious injuries have precluded him to recall or make a statement about the accident.