CEN12LA473
CEN12LA473

On July 24, 2012, at 1230 mountain daylight time, a Cessna model TR182 airplane, N73VX, was substantially damaged during a wheels-up landing at Steamboat Springs Airport (KSBS), Steamboat Springs, Colorado. The private pilot was not injured. The airplane was registered to and operated by Steamboat Springs Flying Club, LLC, under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 while on an instrument flight rule (IFR) flight plan. Day visual meteorological conditions prevailed for the personal flight that originated from Rangely Airport (4V0), Rangely, Colorado, about 1100.

The pilot reported that he canceled his IFR flight plan after the airplane had descended beneath the cloud ceiling during his instrument approach to runway 32 (4,452 feet by 100 feet, asphalt). He then proceeded to land without extending the landing gear. The pilot reported that he did not hear the landing gear warning horn until the airplane was in the landing flare. The airplane slid on its lower fuselage approximately 1,200 feet before it struck a runway edge identifier light and a lighted taxiway sign. The lower fuselage was substantially damaged during the wheels-up landing. The pilot noted that there were no preimpact mechanical malfunctions or failures that would have precluded normal operation of the airplane.

According to a mechanic who responded to the accident site, the landing gear position handle was found in the "UP" position. The landing gear warning horn sounded, although faintly heard, when the master power switch was turned-on. The landing gear fully extended into the down-and-locked position after the airplane was lifted off the ground and the landing gear handle was placed in the "DOWN" position. With the landing gear fully extended, the green landing gear position light illuminated and the warning horn stopped sounding. The postaccident examination did not reveal any mechanical anomalies or failures with the landing gear extension system.

At 1233, the airport's automatic weather observing station reported the following weather conditions: wind from 220 degrees at 8 knots, visibility 10 miles, broken ceiling 12,000 feet above ground level, temperature 27 degrees Celsius, dew point 04 degrees Celsius, altimeter 30.21 inches of mercury.

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