ANC05LA100
ANC05LA100

On July 3, 2005, about 1945 Alaska daylight time, a tundra tire-equipped PZL Warzawa-Okecie, 104 Wilga 80 airplane, N2245T, sustained substantial damage when it ditched in shallow ocean water following a loss of engine power during takeoff-initial climb from a remote beach at Cape Pierce, about 28 miles south, southeast of Platinum, Alaska. The airplane was being operated as a visual flight rules (VFR) cross-country positioning flight under Title 14, CFR Part 91, when the accident occurred. The airplane was operated by Renfro Alaskan Adventures Inc., Bethel, Alaska. The commercial certificated pilot, the sole occupant, was not injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed. The flight was en route to Bethel, and no flight plan was filed, nor was one required.

During a telephone conversation with the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) investigator-in-charge (IIC), on July 4, the pilot reported that he was departing a beach toward the east-southeast, and after the airplane climbed to about 50 feet, the engine power suddenly decreased, and the airplane began to descend. The pilot said his only emergency landing area was in the water to avoid an area of rocks. He indicated that the airplane stall/mushed into the water adjacent to the beach and nosed over. After the collision, the pilot exited the airplane and made it to the beach, where he notified the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) of the accident via his satellite phone. The pilot said that the only portion of the airplane visible above the water was the main landing gear and tires.

On July 25, an FAA air safety inspector notified the NTSB IIC that the pilot had provided additional information about the accident. The pilot reported to the FAA that he landed on the beach at Cape Pierce with two passengers. The airplane encountered soft conditions and nosed over, which resulted in a broken propeller blade. The pilot arranged for another airplane to retrieve the passengers and he replaced the propeller. The pilot then departed on the accident flight and experienced a loss of engine power, and subsequent ditching.

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