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On April 29, 2011, about 1413 central daylight time, a Jurmu STOL CH-701 airplane, N701MJ, was substantially damaged when it impacted terrain shortly after takeoff at the Carter Airport (92C), Pulaski, Wisconsin. The pilot was fatally injured. The experimental, amateur-built airplane was registered to and operated by the pilot under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed for the flight, which was not operating on a flight plan. The flight was originating at the time of the accident.
A witness reported that the airplane veered to the south during takeoff, narrowly clearing a tree line, and immediately entered a steep climb before leveling off. The engine sounded normal at that time. The airplane subsequently entered a left turn, and then a second steep climb. The witness stated that the engine seemed to sputter and stall. The airplane continued in the left turn until it was on a west heading, at which point it entered a downward spiral and impacted the ground.
A second witness reported that he observed the airplane in-flight east of the airport. It appeared to be on a north heading, about 75 feet above ground level and in an approximate 40-degree left bank. He noted that the engine sounded normal. After about 10 seconds, he lost sight of the airplane behind some trees and almost instantly he heard the sound of the engine stop. He noted that the airplane seemed to have been maintaining altitude during the time he observed it.
The airplane impacted a field about 800 feet northeast of the runway 30 threshold.
The pilot, age 67, held a private pilot certificate with a single-engine land airplane rating. His most recent airman medical certificate was issued in July 2004. It contained limitations for near vision glasses and hearing amplification. There were no subsequent applications for an airman medical certificate on file with the Federal Aviation Administration, nor was there any record of the pilot being denied a medical certificate. He noted a total flight time of 153.6 hours at the time of that medical certificate application.
The pilot had logged about 166 hours total flight time, with 5.5 logged in the same make/model as the accident airplane. His most recent pilot logbook entry was dated December 4, 2010, which consisted of a local flight of 3.0 hours. This was the only flight time logged within the 6-month period preceding the accident. A total of 6.3 hours were logged within the 1-year period preceding the accident. The logbook also included a flight review endorsement dated October 1, 2010.
The accident airplane was a Jurmu STOL 701 (serial number 7-4321). It was powered by a 100-horsepower Rotax 912 ULS reciprocating engine (serial number 5646041). The airplane was issued an experimental, amateur-built airworthiness certificate on September 25, 2010.
The airplane logbooks included 17 entries, with the first dated August 15, 2007, and the last dated December 22, 2010. Description of the work performed included engine test runs and taxi tests. The entries total 10.8 hours time in service. There was no reference to any flight testing in the logbooks.
Weather conditions recorded at the Austin Straubel Airport (GRB), located about 10 miles south of the accident site, at 1353, were: calm wind, 10 statute miles visibility, and clear skies.
WRECKAGE AND IMPACT INFORMATION
The accident site was located about 800 feet northeast of the runway 30 threshold. The fuselage came to rest oriented toward the north and lying on its left side. Both wings were deformed and dislocated from the fuselage. The horizontal stabilizer was partially separated from the aft fuselage. The left horizontal stabilizer was crushed inboard and aft. The left main landing gear was partially collapsed.
The NTSB Investigator-in-Charge (IIC) conducted a postaccident examination of the airplane. The postaccident examination did not reveal any anomalies consistent with a preimpact failure or malfunction. Aileron/flap (flaperon) control continuity was confirmed from the cockpit control yoke to the wing roots. Damage to each flaperon, and to the flaperon control system from each wing root to the control surface, was consistent with the impact sequence. Elevator and rudder control continuity was confirmed from each control surface to the control yoke and the rudder pedals, respectively.
Internal engine continuity was confirmed and compression was obtained at each cylinder during crankshaft rotation. The spark plugs exhibited signatures consistent with normal operation. Fluid consistent in appearance and odor to motor fuel was present in the carburetor bowl. No sediment or contamination was observed. No anomalies with respect to the carburetor were observed. Engine control continuity was confirmed.
MEDICAL AND PATHOLOGICAL INFORMATION
The pilot was transported from the scene in critical condition and admitted to an area hospital for treatment. He remained hospitalized and subsequently died on May 24, 2011. The pilot's death was attributed to injuries received in the accident.
Safety Board regulations define a fatal injury as any injury that results in death within 30 days of the accident.
A review of the weight and balance data contained in the airplane records did not reveal any inaccuracies. Based on the basic airplane weight measurements noted, the calculations did not show any anomalies. The airplane appeared to have been loaded within the kit manufacturer's center-of-gravity limits at the time of the accident flight.