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On August 8, 1999, at 1305 central daylight time, a Bellanca 7GCAA, N5033G, piloted by a private pilot, was destroyed during an in-flight collision with a pine tree and terrain near Titonka, Iowa. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the accident. The personal flight was operating under the provisions of 14 CFR Part 91 and was not on a flight plan. The pilot, the sole occupant, was fatally injured. The flight departed the Algona Municipal Airport, Algona, Iowa, at exact time unknown and was en route to the Owatonna Municipal Airport, Owatonna, Minnesota.
Relatives of the pilot, and witnesses to the accident, described the airplane approaching their residence from the east, at an altitude lower than a set of transmission wires that were along a road near their property. The witnesses stated that as the airplane passed over their house they heard the airplane impact the top of an evergreen tree in their front yard. The airplane impacted a level cornfield approximately 100 yards west of the residence.
According to Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) records, the pilot was a holder of a private pilot certificate with a single engine land rating. FAA records indicated that the pilot was issued a third class medical certificate with no limitations or restrictions on July 3, 1998. At his last FAA medical examination, the pilot reported his total flight time was 150 hours.
The aircraft was a Bellanca 7GCAA, N5033G, serial number 368-78. The Bellanca 7GCAA is a production built, dual strutted high-wing airplane consisting of a fabric covered steel-tube fuselage and a fabric covered wing. The Bellanca 7GCAA has a fixed landing gear and can accommodate a pilot and a single passenger. The FAA issued a Standard Airworthiness Certificate for the airplane on October 25, 1978. The airplane had logged a total time of 3417.6 hours at the last annual inspection dated November 9, 1998. The airplane had logged a total time of 3475.4 hours at the time of the accident.
The engine was a Lycoming O-320-A2D, serial number L-48428-27A, and at the time of the accident had accumulated 1,455 hours since overhaul.
WRECKAGE AND IMPACT INFORMATION
Examination of the residence property revealed severed pine tree branches near a base of a pine tree located in the front yard.
Post examination of the wreckage revealed the right horizontal stabilizer, right portion of the elevator, right wing-struts, and right wing separated from the airplane during and subsequent to the impact with the tree. The right portion of the elevator and one of the right wing struts were found in the side yards of the residence. The right wing, right horizontal stabilizer, and the remaining right wing-strut were found in a cornfield west of the residence. Examination of the main wreckage revealed severed pine tree branches and needles underneath the engine cowling and in the forward cockpit area.
No anomalies were found with the airplane or its systems that could be associated with a preexisting condition.
No anomalies were found with the engine or its systems that could be associated with a preexisting condition.
MEDICAL AND PATHOLOGICAL INFORMATION
An autopsy of the pilot was conducted on August 9, 1999 at the Mercy Medical Center, Mason City, Iowa.
Federal Aviation Administration Forensic Toxicology Fatal Accident Report indicated that the pilot tested positive for Acetaminophen, with a level of 65 ug/ml, ug/g detected.
A party to the investigation was the Federal Aviation Administration Flight Standards District Office, Des Moines, Iowa.
The wreckage was released to the Kossuth County Sheriff on August 9, 1999.