CEN11LA043
CEN11LA043

On October 29, 2010, about 1611 central daylight time, a Piper Aircraft, Inc. PA-46-500TP, N234PM, was substantially damaged during a forced landing following a loss of engine power while departing Charles R. Johnson Airport (T05), Port Mansfield, Texas. The airline transport pilot and two passengers were not injured. The cross country flight was being conducted under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 with an instrument flight rules flight plan. The flight was originating from T05 at the time of the accident, with Alfred C. Thomas Airport (T69), Sinton, Texas, as the intended destination. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the accident.

The pilot stated preflight and run up for takeoff were uneventful. The takeoff roll and departure were normal through gear retraction. Following gear retraction, at about 125 knots, the engine lost power for about 2 seconds. The engine regained power for 3 to 4 seconds and then "lost power again." The pilot flew under power lines and performed a forced landing in a semi open field. During landing the left wing impacted a tree and spun the airplane about 180 degrees, substantially damaging the airplane.

Two postaccident examinations of the wreckage occurred. One took place at the scene of the accident on November 1, 2010, under the supervision of a Federal Aviation Administration inspector. The second took place at a secure storage facility on November 9, 2010, under the supervision of a NTSB investigator. Fuel was noted in the low pressure fuel bowl and the main fuel sump bowl. The fuel appeared clear and free of contaminants. No anomalies were noted with the airframe during either of these inspections. The engine data acquisition unit (DAU) was removed and sent to the NTSB vehicles recorder laboratory for download, and the engine with attached accessories were removed from the airframe and sent to the manufacturer’s facility for examination.

The engine was disassembled and examined under the supervision of a Canadian Transportation Safety Board (TSB) investigator on February 17 and 18, 2011. The engine displayed impact damage, deformation of the exhaust duct, and locally at the gas generator case. The 1st and 2nd stage power turbine guide vane rings displayed circumferential rubbing as a result of making contact with their adjacent components under impact loads. Nothing was noted during the disassembly of the engine that would have precluded normal operation.

The fuel control unit (FCU) was examined externally and tested for operation on a flow bench. The unit met all requirements of a normal Bendix acceptance test with only minor variances attributable to adjustments made during engine set up following installation in the airplane. The fuel control pump was tested separately from the FCU and found to be within normal acceptable limits in both the normal and bypass modes and the inlet screen and outlet filters were both clear of debris or obstructions. The torque limiter, compressor bleed valves, dump and starting solenoid valve, fuel nozzle set, and the fuel oil heater thermovalve all tested within manufacturer’s specifications. The Woodward propeller over-speed governor was tested at an independent facility under the supervision of the NTSB investigator in charge and no anomalies were noted that could have contributed to the accident.

The DAU was downloaded and both channels of the DAU recorded engine condition trend monitoring (ECTM) data events; however, no ECTM events were recorded on the day of the accident.

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