LAX07LA102
LAX07LA102

On March 3, 2007, at 1525 Pacific standard time, a Cessna 182Q, N735SD, experienced a loss of engine power and made a forced landing on Interstate 10 (I-10) near the Banning Municipal Airport (BNG), Banning, California. The airline transport certificated pilot/owner operated the airplane under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 91 as a personal flight. The pilot and three passengers were not injured; the airplane sustained substantial damage. The cross-country flight departed Yolo County-Davis (Woodland) Winters Airport (2Q3), Woodland, California, at 1222, with a planned destination of BNG. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed for the flight, and no flight plan had been filed.

The National Transportation Safety Board investigator-in-charge (IIC) interviewed the pilot. The pilot reported that he had refueled the airplane with 75 gallons of fuel. He estimated that they had flown about 2 hours 50 minutes, and had about 2 hours of fuel remaining. The first part of the flight was flown at 7,500 feet, and the second half of the flight was flown at 9,500 feet. There were no discrepancies noted with the flight until they entered the pattern for landing at BNG.

About 6 miles outside of BNG, the pilot obtained the current weather conditions via the common traffic advisory frequency (CTAF). In the pilot's written statement he indicated that CTAF reported the winds to be from "080 degrees at 20 to 30 knots gusting to 10 to 15 knots." According to the pilot, they entered left-hand traffic for landing. The downwind to base turn was normal, but when he turned onto final he reported that the airplane encountered a "strong" headwind. He added power, but received no corresponding response. He added more power, but there was still no response. The pilot reported that the fuel tanks were selected to BOTH. He knew that he was not going to make the runway and was going to have to make a forced landing. He noted the airplane's altitude between 400-500 feet with buildings and a power relay station in front of him, and off to his left was I-10. The pilot made a slight left turn toward the interstate. He reported traffic on the interstate; however, he was able to stall the airplane in-between two vehicles. The airplane landed hard and spread the landing gear. The nose landing gear collapsed, the propeller struck the ground, and the engine mounts separated from the firewall.

METEOROLOGICAL CONDITIONS

Banning airport is located in a canyon area. Airport personnel noted that there had been a strong easterly wind all day. The winds were reported to be 30 to 50 miles per hour (mph).

Reported wind conditions at Palm Springs international Airport (PSP), Palm Springs, California, located 18 nautical miles (nm) east of BNG, at 1453 were variable winds at 3 knots. At 1552, reported winds were from 140 degrees at 6 knots. At 1653, the winds were reported as calm.

Reported wind conditions at March Air Reserve Base (RIV), Riverside, California, located about 20 nm west of BNG, at 1455, were winds from 080 degrees at 17 knots gusting to 23 knots. At 1555, the winds were reported as 080 degrees at 19 knots. At 1655, reported winds were from 090 degrees at 13 knots gusting to 21 knots.

TEST AND RESEARCH

The Safety Board IIC inspected the engine with no discrepancies noted that would have precluded normal operation. The top spark plugs were removed, and exhibited coloration consistent with a worn out - normal operation condition per the Champion Aviation Check-A-Plug chart AV-27. Movement of the propeller showed movement of the accessory section at the rear of the airplane. Both of the magnetos were removed and manually rotated with spark observed at all posts. The vacuum pump was manually rotated with no binding encountered. The engine driven fuel pump was removed and bench tested, and functioned within Teledyne Continental Motors overhaul specifications limits. A Hartzell PHC-L3YF-1RF three-bladed propeller was attached to the engine. Two of the propeller blade tips were curled with chordwise scratching. The third propeller blade tip was bent forward with chordwise scratching on the aft side of the propeller blade.

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