DEN01LA159
DEN01LA159

On September 9, 2001, approximately 1045 mountain daylight time, a Boeing A75N1 (PT17), N1259V, was substantially damaged when it struck power lines and impacted terrain during a go-around at Aurora Airpark, Watkins, Colorado. The airline transport certificated pilot was not injured, but his passenger received minor injuries. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and no flight plan had been filed for the local area sightseeing flight being conducted under Title 14 CFR Part 91. The flight departed Aurora Airpark approximately 0945.

According to the pilot's accident report, he "set up for a normal landing on runway 14. Just after touching down, on the mains in a tail low attitude, a strong gust of wind caused the Stearman to start to drift." He added full power to abort the landing. The airplane touched down several times on open land as the pilot attempted to get airborne. "Even with full power, the aircraft would not climb or accelerate but stayed essentially in ground effect," the pilot said. The pilot then saw power poles and lines and realized he would be unable to climb over them. He lowered the nose and attempted to fly under the lines. The left wing was torn off when it struck a guy wire for a pole, and the airplane came to a halt resting on its nose.

The passenger's family submitted a written statement and photographs they took at the accident site. According to their statement, "there was not a cloud in the sky and there wasn't even a breeze." They indicated they saw the airplane drift to the left of the runway, accelerate, and proceed east for "1/2 mile to 1 mile attempting to go back up," but it never gained altitude. They observed the airplane fly under the power line and contact the guy wire, "which ripped the wing off and the airplane basically did a complete cartwheel and crashed ending up almost completely upside down."

At 1053, the recorded winds at Denver International Airport, 6 miles north of the accident site, were from 210 degrees at 8 knots.

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