FTW01LA181
FTW01LA181

On August 10, 2001, at 1315 central daylight time, a Zacharius Acroduster I experimental, amateur built airplane, N6614R, was destroyed when it impacted terrain during an uncontrolled descent after the pilot parachuted from the airplane near Conroe, Texas. The airplane was registered to and operated by the pilot. The private pilot, sole occupant of the airplane, was not injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and no flight plan was filed for the 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 personal aerobatic flight. The local flight originated from the Montgomery County Airport, Conroe, Texas.

According to the pilot, he was performing aerobatic maneuvers when the airplane's right rudder cable separated. He flew the airplane to an open field located 7 miles north of Conroe, and while at 4,300 feet msl, exited the airplane. Once clear of the airplane, he deployed his parachute. He stated that he observed the airplane enter a descent, and subsequently, impact trees. The pilot landed on a dirt road without further incident. There were no reported ground injuries.

According to the FAA inspectors, who responded to the accident site, the airplane's structure sustained substantial damage. Review of photographs taken at the accident site revealed that the rudder control cables displayed severe corrosion. In addition to the total separation of the right rudder cable as a result of corrosion, the other segments of the cable displayed separation of some cable strands.

Review of the airplane's maintenance records revealed that the aircraft underwent its last condition inspection on May 12, 2001, at an aircraft total time of 540.96 hours. The condition inspection was the last entry in the aircraft logbook and it read in part, "inspected and lubed control and cables." At the time of the accident the aircraft had accumulated 558.3 total flight hours.

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