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On July 8, 2004, approximately 1830 mountain daylight time, a Extra Flugzeugbau GMBH EA 300/L single-engine airplane, N609JW, was destroyed when it impacted terrain while maneuvering near Boise, Idaho. The airplane was registered to Adrenalin Airsports LLC, of Caldwell, Idaho. The airline transport pilot and his sole passenger sustained serious injuries. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and a flight plan was not filed for the 14 CFR Part 91 personal flight. The flight originated from the Boise Air Terminal/Gowen Field (BOI), Boise, Idaho, approximately 1800.
According to the Pilot/Operator Aircraft Accident Report (NTSB Form 6120.1/2), the pilot reported that prior to the flight he conducted a preflight check of the airplane and that the center fuel tank was full, the wing tanks had little or no fuel, and that all controls operated normally. The pilot further reported that after taking off with the intent of making a short flight, he began performing a variety of aerobatic maneuvers in a low level aerobatic box over flat desert terrain a few miles south of BOI. The pilot stated, "Although I cannot remember the specific maneuver prior to making contact with the ground, I do not recall being concerned with not having enough clearance to complete a maneuver. I was surprised to make contact with the ground." The pilot further stated that he remembered one side of the airplane touching [the ground] and then a "reversal in balance" to the opposite side, with some part of the plane striking the ground very hard. The pilot reported that he was conscious during the remaining sequence and was also conscious when the motion stopped, with the airplane coming to rest inverted. The pilot further reported that he and his passenger remained conscious and speaking with each other while being evacuated from the aircraft.
The pilot held an airline transport pilot certificate with an airplane multi-engine land rating, a commercial single engine land rating, and a private single engine sea rating. The pilot also possessed a Class 1 medical certificate with no limitations, and his most recent biennial flight review was completed on January 19, 2004. The pilot reported having a total of 2,561 hours of flight time, of which 353 hours were in the make and model, and 1,883 hours total time in single engine aircraft.
On September 14, 2003, consistent with the Special Provisions to Federal Aviation Regulation (FAR) Part 91, the Federal Aviation Administration issued the pilot a Statement of Acrobatic Competency for Solo + Formation Aerobatics and Level 1 Unrestricted altitude limitations. The date of expiration was noted as February 28, 2005.
At 1853, the BOI Automatic Surface Observing System (ASOS), located 10 nautical miles north of the accident site, reported wind 040 degrees at 6 knots, visibility 10 statute miles, sky clear, temperature 78 degrees Fahrenheit, dew point 21 degrees Fahrenheit, and an altimeter setting of 29.85 inches of Mercury.
WRECKAGE AND IMPACT INFORMATION
The accident site was located on flat desert terrain 10 nautical miles south of BOI. A global positioning system (GPS) revealed that the accident site was at latitude 43 degrees 25.364 minutes North and longitude 116 degrees 13.390 minutes West, at an elevation of 2,931 feet above sea level. The energy path was oriented on a magnetic heading of 250 degrees and was 345 feet in length and 128 feet in width. The aircraft came to rest inverted on a magnetic heading of 080 degrees.
The initial impact scar measured 15 feet long, 6 inches wide, and 4 inches in depth. The second impact scar, 24 feet downstream of the initial impact point, measured 45 feet in length; the left main landing gear was positioned at the beginning of this impact point. The right main landing gear was located 18 feet down the energy path from the second impact point, with various pieces of Plexiglas and small to medium pieces of fuselage skin located in the area. From the right main landing gear to the main wreckage area was a total of 180 feet, and another 90 feet from the main wreckage to the aircraft's engine.
The cockpit area came to rest in an inverted position. An examination of the rear seated pilot's cockpit area revealed the propeller control was full aft, the mixture control full forward, and the throttle full open.
The left wing was separated from the fuselage. The left aileron remained attached at one hinge point to the wing, while the left flap was separated from the wing. Control continuity from the left aileron to the cockpit area could not be confirmed.
The right wing remained attached to the fuselage. The right aileron was separated from the wing, while the right flap remained attached to the wing. Control continuity from the right aileron to the cockpit could not be confirmed.
Control system continuity was established from the empennage control surfaces to the cockpit.
The airplane's engine was located in line with the energy path and 90 feet downstream of the main wreckage area. The engine was oriented on a magnetic heading of 185 degrees and positioned in an upright orientation. Engine drive train continuity was intact from the propeller through the accessory gearbox. The upper spark plugs were removed and appeared to have little wear and no combustion deposits.
Approximately 18 inches of the inboard portion of one propeller blade remained attached to the propeller hub, while the second propeller blade was found separated from its respective hub and located along the energy path in several pieces.
No preimpact engine or airframe anomalies, which might have affected the airplane's performance, were identified.
The NTSB investigator-in-charge (IIC), traveled to the accident site on July 9, 2004. The IIC subsequently viewed a digital versatile disc (DVD) of the accident sequence, which was furnished by the company the pilot was employed by. Two cameras, both oriented in a northerly direction, were used to record the event; one close-up view and the other with a slightly more distant view.
The airplane initially appeared in view of the cameras heading in a westerly direction, at what was estimated to be about one-half mile north of the camera location. The airplane made a left turn of approximately 90 degrees to a southerly heading, then made a right turn of approximately 90 degrees back to a westerly heading, putting the airplane in a position to pass in front of both cameras.
Approximately 2 seconds after passing in front of the cameras, the pilot initiated a "loop" maneuver by gently pulling the nose of the airplane up into a vertical climb attitude, continuing to the top of the maneuver until in an inverted position. The pilot continued the maneuver without interruption by descending on the back side of the loop. As the aircraft was approaching the bottom of the maneuver in a nose down attitude estimated to be approximately 20 degrees, at an altitude of less than 100 feet above ground level and in a wings level attitude, the airplane was observed to make a quick shallow left bank, followed by a second shallow bank to the right. The airplane's wings then returned to a level attitude momentarily before impacting flat open terrain with its right main landing gear and right wing tip. A subsequent dust cloud generated by the airplane's impact with terrain and a prevailing easterly wind, precluded any further observations of the post impact sequence.
The wreckage was released by a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) aviation safety inspector to the owner's representative on August 3, 2004.