On July 5, 2002, about 1200 Pacific daylight time, an experimental Bushby Mustang M-11, N30430, experienced a propeller blade failure and separation during cruise flight, resulting in a forced landing near Pahrump, Nevada. The pilot/owner was operating the airplane under the provisions of 14 CFR Part 91. The private pilot and passenger were not injured; the airplane sustained substantial airframe damage due to the severity of the vibration from the out of balance propeller. Day visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and a flight plan had not been filed. The personal cross-country flight originated from Apple Valley Airport, Apple Valley, California, about 1115, with a planned destination of Calvada Meadows Airport (NV74), Pahrump. Use your browsers 'back' function to return to synopsisReturn to Query Page
In a written statement the pilot reported that he was approaching NV74 and reduced power. He lowered the nose, in an effort to begin a gradual decent. As the airplane gained speed, he reduced the power again. About 9,500 mean sea level, the engine began to violently shake. He set the throttle to idle, the mixture in the off position, turned off the master switch, and put the fuel selector in the "off" position. He looked for a place to land and spotted a dry lake below. He configured the airplane in a slip and descended. He landed successfully, with the airplane coming to rest about 32 miles south of NV74.
A Federal Aviation Administration inspector stated that post accident examination of the airplane revealed that 21 inches of a propeller blade tip had separated from the propeller body. The pilot thought that the consequential imbalance resulted in substantial damage to the airframe. The engine was left hanging by a 3/8-inch bolt. The propeller was a fixed pitch, aluminum two-bladed McCauley, part number 1A170/7074. It was noted that the propeller had undergone a propeller strike prior to the accident, where it was shortened from 76 inches to 70 inches, and repitched.