ANC12LA002
ANC12LA002

On November 7, 2011, about 1830 Alaska standard time (AST), a Cessna 207 airplane, N6314H, sustained substantial damage during a collision with snow-covered terrain following a loss of control shortly after takeoff from Runway 15 at the Kwigillingok Airport, Kwigillingok, Alaska. The airplane was being operated as Flight 166, by Hageland Aviation Services, Inc., dba ERA Alaska, Anchorage, Alaska, as a visual flight rules (VFR) scheduled commuter flight under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 135. Of the six people aboard, the commercial pilot and two passengers were not injured, and three passengers sustained minor injuries. Night, visual meteorological conditions (VMC) prevailed, and VFR company flight following procedures were in effect. Flight 166 originated in Bethel, Alaska, and it had completed scheduled stops in Kongiganak, Alaska, and Kwigillingok. The accident occurred while returning to Bethel, the flight's final destination for the day.

During a telephone conversation with the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) investigator-in-charge (IIC) on November 8, the pilot reported that before departing on Runway 15, an unlighted, rough and uneven 1,840 foot-long, by 30 foot-wide snow-covered runway, he checked the airport windsock, and noted that a correction for a 5 to 10 knot left quartering crosswind would be required. He said that during the takeoff roll, the airplane bounced twice and became airborne, but it failed to climb. As the airplane neared the departure end of the runway, it began to veer to the left. The pilot said he applied full right aileron to correct the veer, but the airplane continued to the left as it passed over the runway threshold. He said that once he knew the airplane was not going to climb, he lowered the flaps in an attempt to cushion the off-airport landing. The airplane subsequently settled into an area of snow, and tundra-covered terrain, about 100 yards south of the runway threshold, and nosed over.

Sunset on the day of the accident was 1742; the end of civil twilight was 1829.

The Federal Aviation Administration's (FAA) Airport/Facility Directory, Alaska Supplement listing for the Kwigillingok Airport, includes the following notation: "Airport Remarks - Unattended. Night operations prohibited, except rotary wing aircraft. Runway condition not monitored, recommend visual inspection prior to using. Safety areas eroded and soft. Windsock unreliable."

In the Pilot/Operator Aircraft Accident Report (NTSB Form 6120.1) submitted by the operator, the pilot's total aeronautical experience was listed as 1,833 hours, with 349 hours in the accident airplane make and model. The report noted that in the preceding 90 and 30 days prior to the accident, the pilot accrued a total of 390 hours and 107 hours.

According to the operator's chief pilot, the estimated gross weight of the airplane at takeoff was 3,680 pounds, or approximately 120 pounds below the maximum takeoff gross weight of 3,800 pounds.

The closest weather reporting facility was the Kipnuk Airport, Kipnuk, Alaska, about 26 miles west of the accident site. At 1856, an Aviation Routine Weather Report (METAR) was reporting, in part: Wind, 010 degrees (true) at 4 knots; visibility, 10 statute miles.; clouds and sky condition, clear; temperature, 19 degrees F; dew point, 18 degrees F; altimeter, 30.14 inches Hg.

A pilot flying a Cessna 208 that departed about 30 minutes before the accident airplane departed, reported wind to be from the east-southeast, at 10 knots, but favoring Runway 15.

The wreckage was recovered from the accident site and transported to Alaska Claims Services, Inc., in Wasilla, Alaska.

On January 26, 2012, a wreckage examination and layout was done under the direction of the NTSB IIC. Also present were air safety investigators from Continental Motors, Cessna Aircraft, the FAA, and the director of safety for Hageland Aviation Services. There were no preaccident mechanical problems discovered with the airplane's engine or flight controls.

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