ANC12LA096
ANC12LA096

On September 2, 2012, about 1600 Alaska daylight time, a float-equipped Taylorcraft F21 airplane, N2005E, sustained substantial damage when it impacted the water during takeoff at Willow Lake Seaplane Base, Willow, Alaska. The airplane was being operated by the pilot as a visual flight rules (VFR) personal cross-country flight, under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations, Part 91, when the accident occurred. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and the solo pilot received serious injuries.

During a telephone conversation with the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) investigator-in-charge (IIC) on September 3, the pilot said he had landed at the lake due to turbulence along his route of flight. After waiting about 30 minutes, he decided to depart. During takeoff, the airplane became airborne, but he did not think he would clear the trees at the end of the lake. He started a right turn to stay over the water, but as the turn steepened the airplane stalled, and impacted the lake. He said he did not know if the airplane's engine was producing full power. The right wing of the airplane was severed.

In a written statement to the NTSB dated September 14, the pilot said after takeoff the engine began missing. He also indicated that the outside temperature was about 55 degrees F, and that it was raining. He further wrote that "maybe a more lengthy run-up to rule out carburetor ice" would have been appropriate.

In an email to the NTSB IIC dated April 10, 2013, the pilot wrote that eventually the airplane had been salvaged from the lake, and sold for parts. He reported that the more he thought about the circumstances, the more he believed that the loss of power was the result of carburetor ice.

The closest weather reporting facility was the Palmer Airport, about 10 miles east of the accident site. The 1353 weather observation from the Palmer Airport was reporting, in part: Wind, 140 degrees (true) at 16 knots, gusting to 21 knots; visibility, 10 statute miles; clouds and sky condition, 4,000 scattered, 7,000 feet broken, 9,000 overcast; temperature, 55 degrees F; dew point, 33 degrees F; altimeter, 29.77 inches Hg.

According to a carburetor icing probability chart, the conditions at the time of the accident were conducive to serious carburetor icing at any engine power setting.

No preaccident mechanical problems were reported, and due to the remote location, the airplane and engine were not examined by the NTSB.

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