ERA09LA151
ERA09LA151

On February 1, 2009, about 1530 eastern standard time, an Aeronca 7AC, N3066E, was substantially damaged during a precautionary landing near Cameron, South Carolina. The certificated commercial pilot was not injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and no flight plan had been filed for the local flight that departed Owens Field (CUB), Columbia, South Carolina. The personal flight was conducted under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 91.

The pilot reported that he had been flying for about 1 hour, and was at an altitude of 800 feet mean sea level, when the airplane's engine began to run rough. The pilot elected to perform a precautionary off-airport landing to a nearby cotton field. During the subsequent landing roll, the airplane nosed over and sustained substantial damage to the firewall and vertical stabilizer. The pilot did not recall the engine rpm and did not use the carburetor heat control after experiencing the engine roughness. He further stated that he departed CUB with 13 gallons of fuel, which he checked prior to takeoff and was absent of contamination.

Examination of the airplane by a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) inspector did not reveal any preimpact malfunctions. In addition, the engine was started and test run with no anomalies noted.

The airplane had been operated for about 15 hours since its most recent annual inspection, which was performed on December 20, 2008.

The pilot reported 800 hours of total flight experience, which included about 200 total hours in the same make and model as the accident airplane.

A weather observation taken at an airport about 30 miles southeast of the accident site, at 1553, reported: winds from 200 degrees at 11 knots; visibility 10 statute miles; sky clear; temperature 16 degrees Celsius (C); dew point -4 degrees C; altimeter 30.15 inches of mercury.

According to the carburetor icing chart contained in the FAA publication Winter Flying Tips, P-8740-24, the atmospheric conditions at the time of the accident were not conducive for the formation of carburetor ice.

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