On January 29, 2007, about 1635 eastern standard time, a Cessna T210M, N761RS, registered to Ceasey A Magan Corp, and operated by a private pilot, collided with trees while attempting a forced landing following a loss of engine power near Haddock, Georgia. The personal flight was operated under the provisions of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 91 with no flight plan filed. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed. The private pilot received fatal injuries. The airplane was substantially damaged by impact and postcrash fire. The flight departed from Thomaston-Upson County Airport (OPN) in Thomaston, Georgia, on January 29, 2007, about 1610. Use your browsers 'back' function to return to synopsisReturn to Query Page
A witness stated that on the day of the accident the pilot had picked him up at OPN about 0845. Before takeoff, the pilot covered the pre-flight checklist. They took off and flew sightseeing to Culloden and Roberta, Georgia, then proceeded to Peachtree City and landed at Falcon Field, arriving about 0930. They parked the airplane at Falcon Aviation.
The witness stated that about 1540, they taxied to runway 31, performed a run-up and went through the checklist. They took off and departed to the southwest directly to OPN. The flight was uneventful and during the approach to landing the witness remembered that the pilot had switched to the right fuel tank and turned on the auxiliary fuel pump. They crossed mid-field and made left traffic to downwind for runway 30. The landing was smooth and uneventful.
The witness stated that between 1605 and 1610, while taxiing after landing the witness noticed a steady stream of liquid coming from the underneath of the right wing, about 12-inches in from the wing tip. The pilot said that this happened on occasion when the fuel tanks were full or near full and there was a temperature increase upon descent, the fuel was coming from a fuel vent.
After arrival, the FBO asked if they needed fuel, and the pilot replied no. While exiting the airplane, the witness observed the pilot switch the fuel lever back to the left tank. I said goodbye and walked to the end of the right wing. No further fuel leaking from the vent was observed. The pilot departed for a return flight to Baldwin County Airport (MLB), Milledgeville, Georgia.
A review of recorded voice communications between the pilot and the Macon Flight Service Station (FSS) found that the pilot declared "Mayday," at 1634, on the emergency frequency of 121.5 stating that he had a "sudden loss of engine power" and was going to make an off airport landing. Macon FSS asked the pilot if they could provide any assistance, the pilot stated his position and heading, shortly after that, communication was lost with the pilot.
The pilot, age 56, held a private pilot certificate with an airplane single-engine land rating, issued on September 9, 1995, and a third-class medical certificate issued on January 30, 2006, with a restriction that he must wear corrective lenses. The pilot reported on his application for the medical certificate that he had accumulated 1,252 total flight hours. The pilot's logbook was not recovered.
The six-seat, high-wing, retractable-gear airplane, was manufactured in 1978. It was powered by a Continental TSIO-520R, 300-hoursepower engine, and equipped with a McCauley variable-pitch propeller.
A review of the airplane's logbooks found that the last annual inspection was performed on August 1, 2006. According to the write up, the tachometer time was 629, the engine total time was 820.0 since last overhauled and the airframe total time was 3,079.0 hours.
The 1653 surface weather observation at Macon Middle Georgia Regional Airport in Macon, Georgia, was: wind variable at 3 knots, visibility 10 miles, sky clear, temperature 44 degrees Fahrenheit, dew point temperature 42 degrees Fahrenheit, and altimeter 30.19.
WRECKAGE AND IMPACT INFORMATION
The wreckage was located 10 nautical miles west of the Milledgeville Airport in Haddock, Georgia. The airplane had impacted several trees and came to rest on a 163 degree magnetic heading near a large open cattle pasture. A large pine tree approximately 24-inches in diameter was uprooted during the impact.
Examination of the airplane found the cabin area suspended in a tree approximately 10-feet above the ground, with the engine, firewall, and nose gear separated from the fuselage and resting on the ground, mostly consumed by the post-crash fire.
The landing gear selector valve was found in the down detent position. The nose gear actuator shaft was sheared off near the gear attach point, and the shaft was extended approximately 8.5-inches or gear-up position. The fuel selector was observed on the right fuel tank position. No cockpit engine or propeller controls were observed. The instrument panel, flight instruments, and radios were impact damaged and consumed by the post-crash fire. Fragments of the forward 4-seats and seat tracks were observed. No seat belt webbing was found. Both main landing gear were found down but were free to swing. The main landing gear locking mechanisms were damaged during the impact.
The left wing remained partially attached to the fuselage at the rear spar. Approximately 4-feet of the outboard wing including the aileron was observed separated and was found resting on the ground about 20-feet left and aft of the main wreckage. The left wing was consumed by fire from the wing root to outboard of the wing fuel tank. Impact damage was observed along the leading edge and bottom of the wing. Most of the left wing lower skin was consumed by fire.
The right wing remained partially attached to the fuselage. The wing was consumed by fire from the wing root to the wing tip with only wing structure remaining. The flap actuator measured 4.4-inches, equating to a 0-degree flap extension, and the flaps were observed in the up position. The aileron control cables exhibited tension overload in the wing root areas, but were still attached to the aileron bellcranks.
The fuselage just forward of the vertical stabilizer was consumed by fire. Examination of the left, right and vertical stabilizers found them intact with minor damage. The left elevator torque tube attach rivets were sheared. The elevator trim tab actuator measured 1.3-inches or 13-degrees tab down. Flight control cable continuity was established for the rudder and elevators.
The engine was observed upside down with the number two, four, and six cylinders low. The engine remained attached to the airframe via the throttle control cable and fuel lines. The engine exhibited thermal damage throughout. All six cylinders remained attached to the crankcase. The left and right magnetos, vacuum pump, fuel pump, oil pump, propeller governor, oil cooler, turbo, intercooler, throttle body fuel control unit, and propeller remained attached to the engine. The crankshaft rotated about 40 degrees when the propeller was turned by hand. Continuity was established from the forward portion of the engine aft to the accessory gears.
Examination of the engine included disassembly. The induction air pipes, exhaust system, spark plugs, valve covers, accessory components, and rear accessory case were removed and documented. The left and right magnetos remained attached to the engine and exhibited thermal damage. The magnetos were removed and rotated freely by hand with impulse coupling engagement. When rotated, the magnetos did not produce sparks on any of the leads. The magnetos were disassembled and internal thermal damage was observed.
The fuel pump remained attached to the engine and was removed for examination. The fuel pump drive coupling was intact. The fuel pump drive shaft rotated stiffly by hand. The fuel pump exhibited thermal damage and a portion of the aneroid was exposed and thermally damaged. The fuel pump was disassembled and no anomalies were noted. No lead seal was present; however the safety wire was present and intact.
The crankshaft gear cluster was intact and safety wired. All main bearing journals were intact and free of damage. 45 degree cracks were observed along the thrust plate around the circumference of the crankshaft. The crankshaft, case halves and main bearings were sent to the NTSB Materials Laboratory for further examination.
MEDICAL AND PATHOLOGICAL INFORMATION
An autopsy was performed on the pilot on January 29, 2007 by the Georgia Bureau of Investigation, Division of Forensic Sciences, Atlanta, Georgia. The autopsy findings reported the cause of death as multiple blunt force trauma.
Forensic toxicology was performed on specimens from the pilot by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), Aeronautical Sciences Research Laboratory, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. The toxicology report stated that no Carbon Monoxide, Cyanide or Drugs were detected in the blood, and no Ethanol was detected in Vitreous.
The crankshaft, case halves and main bearings were examined by the NTSB Materials Laboratory. The examination found that the engine was not rotating at impact, but did not reveal any abnormalities that would have prevented the normal operation or production of power.