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Safety Recommendation Details

Safety Recommendation A-79-008
Details
Synopsis: ON AUGUST 30, 1978, A PIPER MODEL 31-350 AIRCRAFT, N44LV, CRASHED SHORTLY AFTER TAKEOFF FROM LAS VEGAS, NEVADA; THE 10 PERSONS ON BOARD WERE KILLED. WITNESSES SAW THE AIRCRAFT REACH A STEEP NOSE-HIGH ATTITUDE AFTER TAKEOFF BEFORE IT FELL OFF ON THE RIGHT WING, REVERSED DIRECTION, AND DOVE TOWARD THE GROUND. THE AIRCRAFT HAD ACHIEVED A NEARLY FLAT ATTITUDE IN AN APPARENT ATTEMPT TO RECOVER WHEN IT STRUCK THE GROUND WITH HIGH VERTICAL FORCES.
Recommendation: ISSUE A MAINTENANCE BULLETIN TO ALERT GENERAL AVIATION INSPECTORS OF THE POSSIBILITY OF LOOSENED OR MISADJUSTED CONTROL STOP BOLTS ON GENERAL AVIATION AIRCRAFT. STOPS ON VARIOUS MODELS OF AIRCRAFT SHOULD BE SPOT CHECKED TO ENSURE THAT CONTROL STOP BOLTS ARE POSITIVELY SECURED AND THAT THERE IS NO POSSIBILITY THAT VIBRATORY LOADS CAN RESULT IN A CHANGE IN THE RANGE OF TRAVEL OF ANY CONTROL SURFACE. (URGENT)
Original recommendation transmittal letter: PDF
Overall Status: Closed - Acceptable Action
Mode: Aviation
Location: Las Vegas, NV, United States
Is Reiterated: No
Is Hazmat: No
Is NPRM: No
Accident #: 80075
Accident Reports: Las Vegas Airlines, Piper PA-31-350, N44LV
Report #: AAR-79-08
Accident Date: 8/30/1978
Issue Date: 3/5/1979
Date Closed: 7/30/1981
Addressee(s) and Addressee Status: FAA (Closed - Acceptable Action)
Keyword(s): General Aviation,Maintenance

Safety Recommendation History
From: NTSB
To: FAA
Date: 7/30/1981
Response: In response to a-79-8 we note that the faa has issued three airworthiness alert bulletin regarding the inspection of the elevator stop bolts and stop nuts. This recommendation is now classified in a closed--acceptable action status.

From: FAA
To: NTSB
Date: 6/15/1981
Response: FEDERAL AVIATION ADMINISTRATION LTR: AS PREVIOUSLY STATED, THE FAA HAS ISSUED THREE AIRWORTHINESS ALERT BULLETINS ON THIS SUBJECT. WE BELIEVE THIS ACTION SATISFIES THE INTENT OF SAFETY RECOMMENDATION A-79-8, AND WE CONSIDER ACTION ON THIS RECOMMENDATION COMPLETED.

From: NTSB
To: FAA
Date: 4/17/1981
Response: The faa response of 6/7/79, indicated several actions taken and ongoing to resolve these recommendations. In our followup letter of 7/3/79, we stated pending the completion of the faa's actions. We have not yet received a response to this letter. . . . however, we are now investigating a similar type accident. A piper pa-31 navajo chieftain crashed on takeoff at prescott, arizona, on 2/10/81. After the gear was retracted, the nose pitched up and a stall occurred. Prior to the pilot reducing power, he and the right front passenger vainly tried to push the yoke forward to recover from the stall. Investigation revealed that the elevator down- stop bolt, that limits the down elevator travel, had backed out eight threads. The requirements of the ad had been complied with on may 10, 1979. This recent accident has added to our concern in that a positive locking method is not utilized to prevent such occurrences. We request a further response to our two recommendations and to be informed of the results of the faa's maintenance analysis center review.

From: NTSB
To: FAA
Date: 7/3/1979
Response: In a-79-8, we recommended that the faa issue a maintenance bulletin to alert aviation inspectors to the possibility of loosened or maladjusted control stop bolts and suggested spot-checking of bolts for proper security. We are pleased to learn that the faa has issued a generalaviation airworthiness alert (advisory circular no. 43-16, alert no. 11 dated june 1979), recommending periodical checks of the control surface travel and the condition of control surface stops. We also note that the faa intends to issue a maintenance bulletin. Pending completion of this action, this recommendation is also being maintained in an open--acceptable action status.

From: FAA
To: NTSB
Date: 6/7/1979
Response: FAA LTR: WE WILL ISSUE A MAINTENANCE BULLETIN IN JUNE 1979, WHICH WILL ALERT FIELD INSPECTORS TO THE POSSIBILITY OF LOOSE OR MISADJUSTED FLIGHT CONTROL STOP BOLTS ON AIRCRAFT WHICH FALL WITHIN THEIR RESPONSIBILITIES. AN AIRWORTHINESS ALERT, ADVISORY CIRCULAR NUMBER 43-16, ADVISING OWNERS, OPERATORS, AND MECHANICS TO CHECK CONTROL SURFACE TRAVEL AND THE CONDITION OF CONTROL SURFACE STOPS HAS BEEN PREPARED FOR THE JUNE 1979 ISSUE.