NYC93LA155
NYC93LA155

On Sunday, August 15, 1993, at 1400 eastern daylight time, a Cessna 150G, N2807S, registered to and piloted by Neal H. Bradley, sustained substantial damage after an attempted takeoff from the Caledonia County Airport, Lyndonville, Vermont. The pilot was seriously injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and no flight plan was filed. The flight was being conducted under 14 CFR 91.

The pilot stated:

Engine start was normal....Carburetor heat had a slight drop, however, the cable movement was quite free. [The] aircraft left the ground in about normal time and distance. I picked up 80 MPH and started climb out. At about 200 feet the engine began to lose power and the aircraft approached stall. At this time the aircraft was too far down the runway to abort the takeoff. I dropped flaps and tried to turn back to the runway rather than into a barn or woods. While in the turn the engine completely quit. The aircraft hit the ground while I was trying to pull out of a diving turn.

Mr. Thomas E. Winans, the airport manager and a witness to the accident stated:

The aircraft made one take off and landing... after the landing the pilot called me on the radio to meet him on the ramp to fasten his engine cowling door that had come undone so he would not have to shut down the engine. After I fastened the door the aircraft back taxied to the active runway 02. The next thing I saw was the aircraft go by my office at an altitude of about 100 feet above the runway. The flaps were down in excess of 10 degrees and the aircraft seemed to be doing slow flight. I thought to myself Neal this is no time to be doing slow flight this far down the runway, get your flaps up and some power and go....the aircraft tried to execute a left turn...the left wing dropped and contacted the ground.

Mr. Joseph G. Murray and Mr. Gary Readio, Aviation Safety Inspectors for the Federal Aviation Administration, examined the airplane wreckage on the day of the accident. In his report, Mr. Murray stated:

...wing flaps appear to be almost, if not fully, extended....carburetor heat on, and the flap ` switch down....the carburetor heat flapper was in the full on position. Movement of the carburetor heat control...from the cockpit found the body of the cable assembly moving freely through the clamp, just aft of the valve arm due to the clamp not being tight. This effectively prevented the movement of the carburetor heat valve.

On August 19, 1993, Mr. Murray conducted a telephone interview of the pilot, who was still hospitalized, but willing to discuss the accident. Mr. Murray summarized this interview as follows:

He left the ground at 60 knots and then dropped the nose to pick up speed to 80 knots, which he felt would give him the best rate of climb. He felt the aircraft engine started to lose power. He said the aircraft was vibrating and the airspeed was bouncing on the bottom of the airspeed scale. He looked...to see if the pitot was blocked. He did not check any engine instruments.

On August 25, 1993, Mr. Murray and Mr. Readio conducted a personal interview with the pilot. During this interview, he was asked how he detected the loss of power. He replied that he noticed the airspeed indicator needle bouncing and the aircraft shaking. He said that he could not remember any engine indications. He was asked about the position of the wing flaps and the carburetor heat. He stated that the flaps were up and the carburetor heat was off.

On September 8, 1993, Mr. Dayton W. Mosher, Airworthiness Aviation Safety Inspector for the Federal Aviation Administration, supervised an examination of the wreckage by representatives of the Cessna Aircraft Company and the Teledyne Continental Engine Company. During this examination, some adjustments were made to the engine to repair impact-related damage. After this was accomplished, the "engine fired and ran smoothly."

Computations utilizing the temperature and pressure altitude revealed that the density altitude on the day of the accident was approximately 2200 feet.

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