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Crash of a Beechcraft 60 Duke in Destin: 4 killed

Date & Time: Aug 30, 2018 at 1030 LT
Type of aircraft:
Registration:
N1876L
Flight Type:
Survivors:
No
Schedule:
Toledo - Destin
MSN:
P-386
YOM:
1976
Crew on board:
1
Crew fatalities:
Pax on board:
3
Pax fatalities:
Other fatalities:
Total fatalities:
4
Circumstances:
The aircraft impacted terrain during an approach to the Destin Executive Airport (DTS), Destin, Florida, Texas. The commercial rated pilot and three passengers were fatally injured, and the airplane was destroyed. The airplane was registered to and operated by Henry Leasing Company, LLC, as a 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 cross-country fight. The flight departed the Toledo Executive airport (TOL) about 0747 en route to DTS, and an instrument flight plan had been filed. A preliminary review of air traffic control (ATC) communications revealed that as the flight approached the destination airport, the pilot was in contact with the Eglin AFB approach controller, reported DTS in sight, and then canceled his IFR clearance. The pilot was then handed over to the DTS tower controller, where the pilot reported that he was about 2 miles north of DTS. There were no further communications between the pilot and air traffic control. The airplane wreckage was located in a remote, wooded area of the Eglin AFB reservation property, about 8.5 miles northwest of the DTS airport and 2.5 miles northwest of the Eglin AFB. The airplane impacted trees, on a 067-degree heading with a wreckage path about 380 feet long. Several fragments of the airplane were located along the wreckage path: the airplane's nose cone was located near the initial impact point, the left-wing tip fuel tank and right outboard wing was near the beginning of the path, and the right horizontal stabilizer and elevator were fragmented and located on the wreckage path. The airplane came to rest inverted, with a post-crash fire consuming most of the cabin and inboard section of the wings. Both engines had impact and fire damage; with the right engine located just right of the main wreckage. The left engine was located in front of the main wreckage. Both 3-bladed propellers had broken from and was next to their respective engines.

Crash of a Cessna 414A Chancellor off Destin: 1 killed

Date & Time: Aug 2, 2016 at 2030 LT
Type of aircraft:
Operator:
Registration:
N2735A
Flight Phase:
Flight Type:
Survivors:
No
Schedule:
Destin – Abbeville
MSN:
414A-0463
YOM:
1980
Crew on board:
1
Crew fatalities:
Pax on board:
0
Pax fatalities:
Other fatalities:
Total fatalities:
1
Captain / Total flying hours:
15000
Aircraft flight hours:
6202
Circumstances:
The instrument-rated commercial pilot departed from an airport adjacent to the Gulf of Mexico with an instrument flight rules clearance for a cross-country flight in dark night, visual
meteorological conditions. The flight continued in a south-southwesterly direction, climbing to about 900 ft over the gulf, where it entered a steep right turn. The airplane then descended at a steep rate and impacted the water in a nose-low attitude. Post accident examination of the recovered wreckage, including flight controls, engines, and propellers revealed no evidence of preimpact failure or malfunction. While the outlet fuel line from the left auxiliary fuel pump was found separated and there was evidence that the B-nut was loose and had been only secured by the first 2 threads, recorded data from the engine monitor for the flight revealed no loss of power from either engine. Therefore, the final separation likely occurred during the impact sequence. Although the accident pilot was instrument rated and had recently completed instrument currency training, the dark night conditions present at the time of the accident combined with a further lack of visual references due to the airplane's location over a large body of water, presented a situation conducive to the development of spatial disorientation. The pilot had been instructed by air traffic control to turn southwest after takeoff; however, the continuation of the turn past the intended course and the airplane's steep bank angle and excessive rate of descent are consistent with a loss of control due to spatial disorientation.
Probable cause:
The pilot's loss of control due to spatial disorientation shortly after takeoff, while maneuvering
over water during dark night conditions.
Final Report: