HISTORY OF FLIGHT Use your browsers 'back' function to return to synopsisReturn to Query Page
On November 6, 1993, at 1715 central standard time, a Cessna 152, N4674L, was destroyed on impact with terrain while maneuvering near Van Horn, Texas. The student pilot and his passenger were fatally injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed throughout the area for the personal flight.
According to the operator, the 99 hour student pilot received a 90 day solo endorsement on the afternoon prior to the accident, and he was endorsed to conduct a day VFR solo cross country the next morning. Sometime after dark, the pilot returned to the airport and elected to fly to Van Horn, Texas, where he landed at approximately 2130, and spent the night.
According to friends and relatives near the accident site, the student pilot invited several friends and relatives to come out to the airport for a ride in his rented airplane. Four flights were completed prior to the accident. The airplane was observed departing the Culberson County Airport, near Van Horn, Texas, and proceed under two sets of powerlines, prior to buzzing a house while approximately 20 feet above the ground.
Witnesses further stated that after buzzing the house, the airplane initiated a very steep climb, followed by the nose of the airplane dropping to the near vertical attitude until contact was made with the ground.
According to one of the passengers that went for a ride prior to the accident, the pilot had stated "that he was qualified to fly just about anything with wings," and never told anyone that he was a student pilot.
The student pilot made his first dual flight on December 11, 1991. According to Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) records, the student pilot had his student pilot privileges revoked on January 24, 1992, for a period of one year following a flight on December 27, 1991, in which he was observed performing acrobatic maneuvers within 20 feet of persons near a lake. The emergency revocation order also stated that the pilot was carrying an unauthorized passenger, and his logbook was not endorsed for solo flight.
WRECKAGE AND IMPACT INFORMATION
The ground scar was 75 feet long on a measured heading of 180 degrees. The airplane came to rest in the inverted position on a measured heading of 350 degrees. Three ground scars were found at the initial point of impact. Two gouges contained fiberglass fragments from the wheel pants of the two main landing gears. The push-pull rod for the nose wheel steering was found in the center gouge. Paint chips and transfers from the aft lower section of the empennage were also found at another ground scar located near the initial point of impact.
The propeller assembly was found sheared at the propeller flange. Both blades exhibited "S" type bending and striations. Flight control continuity was established to all flight controls.
MEDICAL AND PATHOLOGICAL INFORMATION
An autopsy and toxicological tests were ordered and performed on the pilot. The autopsy was performed by Juan U. Contin, M.D, on November 7, 1993, at El Paso, Texas, at the request of Mr. Oscar Espinoza, Justice of the Peace for Culberson County. Toxicology tests were positive for a low dose of Marihuana, and a small dose of Ethanol in the urine. The Acetaminophen (Tylenol) detected in the blood and urine was insignificant.
The wreckage was released to the owner's representative on November 8, 1993, at the accident site following the completion of the field investigation.