On May 16, 2002, at 1614 central daylight time, an experimental Mark K. Taber, Lancair Super ES, N600MT, registered to and operated by the private pilot, collided with the ground and burst into flames shortly after takeoff from the Bobby L. Chain Municipal airport in Hattiesburg, Mississippi. The personal flight was operated under the provisions of Title 14 CFR Part 91, and visual flight rules. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and no flight plan was filed for the local flight. The pilot and pilot rated passenger received fatal injuries, and the airplane was destroyed by impact and post-crash fire. The flight originated from the Bobby L. Chain Municipal Airport in Hattiesburg, Mississippi, on May 16, 2002, at 1600. Use your browsers 'back' function to return to synopsisReturn to Query Page
Witnesses observed the airplane as the pilot conducted touch-and-go landings. On the last take-off, witnesses stated that they heard a popping sound, and they observed the airplane in a steep right turn. A series of three rapid pops were heard and the airplane nosed down and collided with the ground in a wooded area; a subsequent explosion was heard.
Examination of the accident site revealed that the airplane had received extensive fire damage. The engine was recovered and sent to Teledyne Continental Motors, Inc., for further examination. Examination of the engine found extensive crush and fire damage. The number 6 exhaust rocker arm was missing, the number 6 head was broken at the exhaust area during impact, separating the rocker arm and support boss structure. The magnetos and fuel system components sustained extensive fire damage which prevented functional testing. No component or system failure was noted during the engine examination.
The pilot held a private pilot certificate. His total flight time as of his last medical dated June 11, 2001 was 95 hours in all aircraft. The pilots log book was not recovered. The pilot completed a third class medical examination on June 11, 2001.
The postmortem examination of the pilot was at the Forrest County Coroners Office, Mississippi. The reported cause of death was multiple blunt force trauma injuries. The Forensic toxicology was performed by the FAA Toxicology and Research Laboratory, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. The toxicological examination showed No carbon monoxide detected in blood, no cyanide detected in blood, no ethanol detected in Vitreous, however, 0.0202 (ug/ml, ug/g) Tetrahydrocannabinol carboxylic acid (marihuana) detected in Liver, 0.0218 (ug/ml, ug/g) tetrahydrocannabinol carboxylic acid (marihuana) detected in urine.