HISTORY OF THE FLIGHT Use your browsers 'back' function to return to synopsisReturn to Query Page
On November 5, 1993, about 1905 central standard time, a Cessna 182Q, N97450, registered to Quality Imports, Inc., crashed into trees while on approach to Bob Sikes Airport, Crestview, Florida, while on a 14 CFR Part 91 personal flight. Instrument meteorological conditions prevailed at the time and an instrument flight rules flight plan was filed. The aircraft was destroyed and the airline transport-rated pilot was fatally injured. The flight originated at Mobile, Alabama, on November 5, 1993, at about 1821.
After departure from Mobile, Alabama en route to Crestview, Florida under an instrument flight rules clearance the pilot was informed by FAA Mobile Departure Control that his transponder was not working. The flight proceeded to Crestview. At 1852, controllers at the Eglin, Air Force Base Radar Approach Control instructed the pilot to hold over the Crestview VOR and at 1859, the controller informed the pilot that the aircraft's transponder was not working. At 1902, while 2 miles north of the Crestview VOR, the flight was cleared to perform the VOR-A instrument approach to the Bob Sikes Airport. The pilot confirmed receipt of this clearance. At 1906, the controller instructed the pilot to contact the Crestview FAA Flight Service Station. The pilot did not acknowledge this instruction and no further contact was made with the flight. (See attached air traffic control transcripts and information.)
Witnesses in the accident area reported hearing the aircraft flying low, the engine operating normally, and observed the landing light shining through the clouds. They next heard the aircraft impact trees multiple times, the engine noise cease, and then ground impact. About 5 seconds after ground impact they heard several explosions and then saw flames from the burning aircraft. (See attached records of telephone conversation.)
Information on the pilot is contained in this report.
Information on the aircraft is contained in this report.
Instrument meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the accident. Eyewitnesses reported the skies were overcast, it was foggy and that it was not raining at the time of the accident. Additional meteorological information is included in this report and in attachments to this report.
WRECKAGE AND IMPACT INFORMATION
The aircraft crashed in a wooded area to the west of Staff Road, Crestview, Florida. The crash site was along the VOR-A approach path from the Crestview VOR to the Bob Sikes Airport. At the point of the crash the normal altitude for an aircraft on the approach is 1,300 feet msl. Examination of the crash site indicated the aircraft struck the top of a 100-foot tall pine tree, while on an east-southeast heading, severing the outboard right wing. The aircraft then traveled on an east-southeast heading for 360 feet where it collided with additional trees and then the ground. The main wreckage came to rest 600 feet east southeast of the point of initial tree impact. A postcrash fire mainly consumed the main wreckage. Numerous 3- to 4-inch tree branches which had been cut and slashed were found at the crash site.
All components of the aircraft necessary for flight were located along the 600-foot wreckage path. All separation points in the aircraft structure and flight control systems were indicative of overstress separation. There was no evidence of precrash fire damage.
Examination of the engine indicated the engine assembly rotated normally. Continuity was confirmed within the engine assembly, valve train, and accessory drives. Each magneto operated normally. The engine fuel system operated normally. The engine muffler was examined and no evidence of exhaust leakage was found.
Examination of the aircraft's propeller indicated that each propeller blade had damage typical of a propeller turning under power during ground and object impact. Each propeller face had chordwise scratching. Each propeller blade pitch change pin block was failed. Imprint marks inside the propeller hub coincided with each blade being in low pitch at the time of ground and object impact.
The vacuum pump drive shaft was partially consumed by fire. Internal examination of the pump indicated all components were in place with no evidence of failure or malfunction. The vacuum driven directional gyro was found to be reading 125 degrees after the accident. Examination of the gyro rotors from the attitude indicator and directional gyro indicated each gyro case had not sustained crush damage. Each gyro did not have rotational scar damage. The aircraft was equipped with a standby vacuum source. Due to fire damage it was not determined if the system had been activated. For additional wreckage and impact information see attachments to this report.
MEDICAL AND PATHOLOGICAL INFORMATION
Postmortem examination of the pilot was conducted by Dr. Edmund R. Kielman, M.D., Associate Medical Examiner, Shalimar, Florida. The pilot died as a result of "subtotal incineration incident to aircraft crash." Dr. Kielman reported the pilot was found to be suffering from "severely restrictive coronary artery disease and superficial chronic gastritis. There was no evidence of fire inhalation and, remarkably, no clear evidences of premortem fractures in skull, spine, ribs, or limbs. It appears likely, in view of the coronary disease, that the victim might well have suffered a heart seizure, lost awareness, and the aircraft plunged in uncontrolled status."
Postmortem toxicology testing on specimens obtained from the pilot was performed by Dr. Dennis V. Canfield, Ph.D., Manager Toxicology, Federal Aviation Administration, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. The tests were negative for carbon monoxide, cyanide, and ethanol. The tests were positive for .101 ug/ml Metoprolol in blood, Metoprolol in urine, 16.700 ug/ml Naproxen in blood, and Naproxen in urine. (See attached toxicology report.)
Dr. Martin Pearlman, Mobile, Alabama, stated on April 21, 1994, that the pilot had been under his care for several years for hypertension. He stated he prescribed Naproxen and Metoprolol to the pilot to control hypertension.
A review of the pilot's FAA medical applications from 1981 to 1993 indicated he had not declared his hypertension condition to the FAA or reported the use of Naproxen and Metoprolol. On March 11, 1981, the FAA sent the pilot a letter requesting additional blood pressure testing due to an elevated blood pressure on the January 19, 1981 medical application. The tests were performed and blood pressures were reported in the normal range during these tests. No further references to hypertension were found in the FAA medical files. For additional medical and pathological information see supplement K to this report and information attached to this report.
The aircraft wreckage was released to Dr. Gerald Hollingsworth, 1005 N. Beal Parkway, Ft. Walton Beach, Florida 32548.