FTW03LA108
FTW03LA108

On March 9, 2003, approximately 1100 central standard time, a Waco UKS-7 vintage tailwheel-equipped airplane, registered to and operated by a private individual was substantially damaged following a loss of control while landing on Runway 26L at the El Paso International Airport (ELP), near El Paso, Texas. The airline transport pilot and his passenger were not injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and a visual flight rules (VFR) flight plan was filed for the Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 personal flight. The cross-country flight originated at 0830 mountain standard time from the Casa Grande Municipal Airport (CGZ), near Casa Grande, Arizona.

The 20,000-hour pilot reported that while on approach to ELP, he obtained the weather information from the automatic terminal information service (ATIS) stating that the winds were from 340 degrees at 5 knots. The pilot observed the airport's windsock blowing in a quartering tailwind position, and stated that the wind "appeared" to be blowing at more than 5 knots. Runway 26L has an asphalt surface, and is 9,025 feet long and 150 feet wide.

The pilot added that after landing on Runway 26L, the 1937-model bi-plane rolled approximately 2,000 feet. A gust of wind "pushed" the rudder to the left, and the aircraft ground looped approximately 90 degrees to the right. The aircraft came to rest at a north heading.

Examination of the aircraft by the operator revealed structural damage to the upper and lower left wings, and the left landing gear.

At the time of the accident, the winds at ELP were reported from 340 degrees at 8 knots, 10 statute miles visibility, clear sky, temperature at 18 degrees Celsius, dewpoint minus 6 degrees Celsius, and an altimeter setting of 30.21 inches of Mercury. The density altitude was calculated by the Investigator-In-Charge at 4,977 feet.

Despite several attempts by the Investigator-In-Charge, the pilot failed to return the completed Pilot/Operator Aircraft Accident Report (NTSB Form 6120.1/2).





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