On November 9, 2002, at 1410 central standard time, a Beech D35, N2935B, owned and piloted by a commercial pilot, received substantial damage on impact with terrain during an emergency return to Dodge Center Airport, Dodge Center, Minnesota. The flight experienced a loss of engine power during initial climb from runway 16 (4,500 feet by 75 feet, concrete). Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the accident. The 14 CFR Part 91 personal flight was not operating on a flight plan. The pilot was seriously injured. The flight was originating at the time of the accident. Use your browsers 'back' function to return to synopsisReturn to Query Page
The pilot reported that after the engine lost power, he actuated the wobble pump but the engine continued not to operate. He then began a left turn to the airport and landed in a plowed field about 1/4 mile southeast of the airport.
The 1953 Beech D35 airplane, serial number D-3576, was registered to the pilot on November 5, 1996. The airplane was powered by a Continental Motors E-225-8, serial number 36123-D-1-8-C, engine. The following airplane/engine logbook entries were obtained from copies provided by the pilot.
On November 1, 2001, at a tachometer time of 1,466 hours and 1,020 hours since major overhaul, an annual inspection of the engine and propeller was performed. The fuel system was cleaned and inspected. A run-up and operational check was recorded as "good."
On November 3, 2001, at a tachometer time of 1,466 hours and a total airframe time of 3,274 hours, the airplane received an annual inspection.
A November 5, 2003, invoice to the pilot dated indicated annual inspection services and the overhaul of a pressure carburetor.
On May 27, 2002, at tachometer time of 1,472.6 hours, the carburetor was overhauled and reinstalled. An operation check was recorded as "good."
The airplane reportedly accumulated a total time of 3,296 hours and 22 hours since the last annual inspection at the time of the accident.
Inspection of the airplane revealed that its landing gear and flaps were in the retracted position. The left wing was damaged. The right wing and empennage were undamaged. Cockpit inspection revealed that the wobble pump handle was fully extended. A liquid consistent with aviation fuel was expelled when the inlet line to the engine driven fuel pump was disconnected and the wobble actuated. The top spark plugs were removed and the propeller was rotated by hand. Valve train continuity and thumb compression of all cylinders was confirmed. Electrical continuity through the spark plug harness was confirmed.
After the wreckage was recovered, the engine was removed and shipped to Teledyne Continental Motor, Mobile, Alabama, for an engine run. During the intial engine run, the engine experienced a total loss of engine power. The engine driven fuel pump, a Thompson Products, Inc., serial number TP 462874 W, was removed and a slave fuel pump was installed. A second engine run was then performed without a total loss of engine power. Disassembly of the removed pump revealed that the drive shaft pin was fractured and a brown substance consistent with corrosion was present.
The pilot said that he fractured his back in several places, his right femur was shattered, his ribs were broken, and his left clavicle was fractured. He has had three operations to his face after his head struck the dash and a total of six to seven operations.
The airplane was not equipped with shoulder harnesses during its manufacture under certification regulations which at the time did not require their installation. The Federal Aviation Administration web site lists under "Information for Pilot and Aircraft Owners" provides a link to "Shoulder Harness Kits." This link states, in part, "The second step in a safety program is to reduce the consequences of those accidents that do occur. The distressing fact is that roughly one-third of general aviation accidents with fatalities are deemed 'survivable.' Many of these are accidents during take-off or landing and generally involve loss of engine power. Others occur during an attempt at a controlled landing. In these events, the crash forces themselves do not kill the pilot. The fatality results from an abrupt encounter with the airplane controls or the panel. Both fatalities and serious injuries can be greatly reduced by proper use of a shoulder harness." The web site also states, "Your lap belt/shoulder harness restraint system is a very important item of safety equipment. Everyone recognizes the importance of the lap belt during turbulent flight. Not everyone recognizes the importance of the shoulder harness during an aircraft mishap. The fact is that use of the shoulder harness represents one of the best life insurance policies you can have. If your airplane does not have shoulder harnesses, have them installed as soon as you can." According to the web site, shoulder harness kit(s) are available for Beech 35 airplanes.
The Beech D35 Emergency Procedures checklist for Engine Failure On Take-Off states:
If airborne and insufficient runway remains for landing:
1. Fuel Selector Valve - SELECT OTHER MAIN TANK
2. Auxiliary (Wobble) Fuel Pump - PUMP (9 TO 10 P.S.I.)
3. Mixture - FULL RICH
4. Ignition - CHECK, ON BOTH
IF NO RESTART
1. Select most favorable landing site.
2. See EMERGENCY LANDING procedure.
3. The use of landing gear is dependent on the terrain where landing must be made.
The Federal Aviation Administration and Teledyne Continental Motors were parties to the investigation.