On October 8, 2008, about 0645 central daylight time, a single-engine Beech A36 airplane, N703KP, was destroyed following a complete loss of engine power and subsequent force landing near Houston, Texas. The commercial pilot, sole occupant, was not injured. The airplane was registered to and operated by a private individual. Night visual meteorological conditions prevailed and no flight plan was filed for the 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 personal flight. The 36-nautical mile cross-country flight originated from the Pearland Regional Airport (LVJ), near Houston, Texas at 0630, and was destined for the David Wayne Hooks Memorial Airport (DWH), in Houston, Texas. Use your browsers 'back' function to return to synopsisReturn to Query Page
According to the pilot, while in cruise fight the propeller's revolutions per minute (RPM) involuntarily increased to approximately 2,900. After an attempt to reduce the RPM's via the propeller governor failed, the pilot was successful by reducing the engine throttle. Seconds later the engine began to make a "knocking noise" before complete engine power was lost. The pilot performed a forced landing to a rough field resulting in a hard touchdown. The pilot was able to exit the airplane unassisted. Moments later the airplane caught fire and was fully engulfed in flames.
The airplane wreckage was recovered back to Air Salvage of Dallas (ASOD), Lancaster, Texas, for further examination. An examination of the engine revealed that the oil filter adapter housing contained a fracture that allowed the engine oil to escape.
According to the airplane's maintenance records, the airplane's last annual inspection was performed on September 26, 2008. The oil filter was replaced at that time. This was reportedly the first flight since the annual inspection.
Due to thermal damage to the oil filter adapter and oil filter, the reason for the fractured oil filter adapter could not be determined.