On May 24, 2008, approximately 1630 central daylight time, a Commonwealth 185, N33384, owned and operated by the pilot, was substantially damaged during a precautionary landing near Roanoke, Texas. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the accident. The personal flight was being conducted under the provisions of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 without a flight plan. The pilot sustained minor injuries. The cross-country flight departed Rhome, Texas, approximately 1515 and was en route to Northwest Regional Airport (52F), Roanoke, Texas. Use your browsers 'back' function to return to synopsisReturn to Query Page
According to the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) inspector who traveled to the scene, the pilot was in cruise flight when he started feeling "shaky" and felt his blood sugar was low. According to the Pilot Aircraft Accident Report Form submitted by the pilot, he had started flying around 1400, had stopped in Rhome to visit a friend, and was on his way back to Roanoke. He had the airport in sight when he "started feeling sick." The pilot indicated that he performed a precautionary landing to a field two miles southwest of the airport. During the approach he was too high, and "could not get down in time." During the landing, he struck an embankment and the main landing gear and nose gear were damaged. Further examination revealed that the firewall was wrinkled, the gear attach points had separated, and the engine mounts were bent. An examination of the airplane systems, conducted by the FAA, revealed no anomalies.
The pilot was treated after the accident and his blood sugar was measured but he did not recall what that reading was. He was given something to eat and felt better. Following the accident, the pilot reported to the FAA and the Safety Board Investigator-in-Charge, that he had type II diabetes. The pilot noted that the condition had been diagnosed in 2000 and was controlled through the use of insulin. He stated that he had occasional problems with low blood sugar. He had been considering ending his time as a pilot but "did not do it soon enough."
The pilot reported that his last medical certificate was issued in May of 1999 and his last flight review was conducted in April of 2001. He stated that he did not apply for a medical certificate after 1999 and had never been denied a medical certificate. He was aware that he could have been awarded a medical certificate, despite his medical conditions, with various limitations and operating requirements. He did hold a current driver's license at the time of the accident and believed he was operating under the requirements of a Sport Pilot Certificate. He did acknowledge that his airplane did not meet the requirements for Sport Pilot Operations, as it exceeded the requirement for gross weight.
According to Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 61.23 the pilot was required to hold at least a third class airmen medical certificate while "exercising the privileges of a private pilot certificate." According to Part 61.56 the pilot was required to have satisfied the requirements of a flight review within 24 calendar months of his last flight review while acting as pilot in command of an airplane.