LAX06CA019
LAX06CA019

On October 15, 2005, at 1305 Pacific daylight time, an amateur-built Harmel RV6A experimental airplane, N221MH, nosed over while landing on runway 24 at Oceanside Municipal Airport, Oceanside, California. The airplane was registered to the pilot, who was also the builder. The private pilot and passenger were not injured; the airplane was substantially damaged. The pilot was operating the airplane under the provisions of 14 CFR Part 91 as a personal cross-country flight. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and a flight plan was not filed. The flight departed Mesquite, Nevada, at 1030, and was destined for Oceanside.

According to the pilot's written statement (provided as part of the Pilot/Operator Aircraft Accident Report; NTSB Form 6120.1/2), he was on final approach at 70 mph over the runway numbers. He leveled out the airplane for touchdown and believed his main landing gear were on the ground for about 100 yards; however, he was mistaken, and in fact, the airplane had not touched down. He released backpressure on the elevator control believing he was on the ground, and the airplane's nose wheel touched down on the runway and the airplane began to porpoise. The pilot attempted to ride out the ensuing oscillations, but they only worsened. The nose wheel broke off and the airplane drifted to the right side of the runway where it exited the paved surface. The nose landing gear strut dug into the dirt and the airplane nosed over onto its spinner where it teetered for a moment before rolling onto the topside of the fuselage. The pilot and passenger exited the airplane after airport rescue personnel broke the canopy.

The airplane sustained structural damage to its fuselage-to-right wing mating area. The pilot added that the accident was simply a case of "pilot-induced-oscillations." Under the section titled "Recommendation (How Could This Accident Have Been Prevented)" in the NTSB Form 6120.1/2, the pilot indicated he could have maintained backpressure longer during the landing.

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