Crash of a Beechcraft Super King Air 200 in Greenville

Date & Time: Nov 9, 2009 at 1009 LT
Operator:
Registration:
N337MT
Flight Type:
Survivors:
Yes
Schedule:
Greenville - Greenville
MSN:
BB-1628
YOM:
1998
Crew on board:
1
Crew fatalities:
Pax on board:
2
Pax fatalities:
Other fatalities:
Total fatalities:
0
Captain / Total flying hours:
15717
Aircraft flight hours:
3060
Circumstances:
The pilot flew the airplane to a maintenance facility and turned it in for a phase inspection. The next morning, he arrived at the airport and planned a local flight to evaluate some avionics issues. He performed a preflight inspection and then went inside the maintenance facility to wait for two avionic technicians to arrive. In the meantime, two employees of the maintenance facility test ran
the engines on the accident airplane for about 30 to 35 minutes in preparation for the phase inspection. The pilot reported that he was unaware that the engine run had been performed when he returned to the airplane for the local flight. He referred to the flight management system (FMS) fuel totalizer, and not the aircraft fuel gauges, when he returned to the airplane for the flight. He believed that the mechanics who ran the engines did not power up the FMS, which would have activated the fuel totalizer, thus creating a discrepancy between the totalizer and the airplane fuel gauges. The mechanics who performed the engine run reported that each tank contained 200 pounds of fuel at the conclusion of the engine run. The B200 Pilot’s Operating Handbook directed pilots not take off if the fuel quantity gauges indicate in the yellow arc or indicate less than 265 pounds of fuel in each main tank system. While on final approach, about 23 minutes into the flight, the right engine lost power, followed by the left. The pilot attempted to glide to the runway with the landing gear and flaps retracted, however the airplane crashed short of the runway. Only residual fuel was found in the main and auxiliary fuel tanks during the inspection of the wreckage. The tanks were not breached and there was no evidence of fuel leakage at the accident site.
Probable cause:
A loss of engine power due to fuel exhaustion as a result of the pilot’s failure to visually verify that sufficient fuel was on board prior to flight.
Final Report:

Crash of a Socata TBM-700 in Leesburg: 3 killed

Date & Time: Mar 1, 2003 at 1445 LT
Type of aircraft:
Registration:
N700PP
Flight Type:
Survivors:
No
Schedule:
Greenville - Leesburg
MSN:
059
YOM:
1992
Crew on board:
2
Crew fatalities:
Pax on board:
1
Pax fatalities:
Other fatalities:
Total fatalities:
3
Captain / Total flying hours:
730
Copilot / Total flying hours:
8375
Aircraft flight hours:
1049
Circumstances:
The private pilot, who sat in the left seat, was executing the LOC RWY 17 instrument approach in actual instrument meteorological conditions, when the airplane decelerated, lost altitude, and began a left turn about 2 miles from the airport. Subsequently, the airplane collided with terrain and came to rest on residential property. The radar data also indicated that the airplane was never stabilized on the approach. A witness, a private pilot, said the airplane "appeared" out of the fog about 300-400 feet above the ground. It was in a left bank, with the nose pointed down, and was traveling fast. The airplane then "simultaneously and suddenly level[ed] out," pitched up, and the engine power increased. The witness thought that the pilot realized he was low and was trying to "get out of there." The airplane descended in a nose-high attitude, about 65 degrees, toward the trees. Radar data indicates that the airplane slowed to 80 knots about 3 miles from the airplane, and then to 68 knots 18 seconds later as the airplane began to turn to the left. Examination of the airplane and engine revealed no mechanical deficiencies. Weather reported at the airport 25 minutes before the accident included wind from 140 degrees at 5 knots, visibility 1 statute mile, and ceiling 500 foot overcast. Weather 5 minutes before the accident included wind from 140 degrees at 5 knots, visibility 1 statute miles, and ceiling 300 foot overcast.
Probable cause:
The pilot's failure to fly a stabilized, published instrument approach procedure, and his failure to maintain adequate airspeed which led to an aerodynamic stall.
Final Report:

Crash of a Cessna 208B Super Cargomaster in Greenville

Date & Time: Sep 23, 2000 at 1950 LT
Type of aircraft:
Operator:
Registration:
N590TA
Flight Type:
Survivors:
Yes
Schedule:
Bangor - Greenville
MSN:
208B-0590
YOM:
1997
Crew on board:
1
Crew fatalities:
Pax on board:
0
Pax fatalities:
Other fatalities:
Total fatalities:
0
Captain / Total flying hours:
5350
Captain / Total hours on type:
2000.00
Aircraft flight hours:
2671
Circumstances:
According to the pilot, he was conducting a GPS approach during occasional low ceilings, reduced visibility and rain. At the minimum descent altitude, the ground was 'occasionally' visible through fog and rain. Near the missed approach point, the runway lights were visible, so he continued the descent. He lost visual contact with the runway, and began a missed approach, but collided with trees. The accident site was 2 miles prior to the runway, on rising terrain, 200 feet below the runway elevation. The missed approach point was over the approach end of the runway.
Probable cause:
The pilot's improper in-flight decision to continue his descent without visual contact with the runway, and his inattention to his altitude, in relation to the airport elevation.
Final Report:

Crash of a Beechcraft 300 Super King Air in Cullman: 2 killed

Date & Time: Jan 14, 1999 at 0918 LT
Registration:
N780BF
Flight Type:
Survivors:
No
Schedule:
Greenville - Cullman
MSN:
FA-70
YOM:
1985
Location:
Crew on board:
1
Crew fatalities:
Pax on board:
1
Pax fatalities:
Other fatalities:
Total fatalities:
2
Captain / Total flying hours:
4100
Aircraft flight hours:
7687
Circumstances:
The airplane descended to 2,600 feet to the NDB, and initiated the approach upon crossing the NDB. As the airplane descended below 1,500 feet MSL, Huntsville lost radar contact. The next communication with the airplane was when the pilot radioed that he was initiating the missed approach. The published missed approach procedure is, 'Climbing lift turn to 2,700 direct CPP NDB and hold.' The airplane made a series of turns within the next one minute and 24 seconds. Additionally, the airplane's altitude varied but it never climbed above the altitude of 1,700 feet. The airplane wreckage was located approximately 3.5 miles north of the airport on a 345 degree heading on the opposite side of the outbound course to the NDB. Witnesses in the immediate area stated that they could hear the airplane flying low over their homes but could not see it due to the foggy conditions. A review of pilot records did not show the pilot having any fixed wing airplane experience.
Probable cause:
The pilot's failure to adhere to the missed approach procedure resulting in a collision with terrain. Contributing factors were fog and the rotorcraft rated pilot's lack of fixed wing certification/experience.
Final Report:

Crash of a Mitsubishi MU-2B-60 Marquise in Mansfield: 4 killed

Date & Time: Jan 2, 1989 at 1643 LT
Type of aircraft:
Operator:
Registration:
N500V
Flight Type:
Survivors:
No
Schedule:
Greenville - Mansfield
MSN:
379
YOM:
1973
Crew on board:
1
Crew fatalities:
Pax on board:
3
Pax fatalities:
Other fatalities:
Total fatalities:
4
Captain / Total flying hours:
11700
Captain / Total hours on type:
2860.00
Aircraft flight hours:
3288
Circumstances:
During arrival, the flight was vectored for an ILS runway 32 approach. As the arrival continued, the ATC controller provided the latest info on cloud tops and in-cloud icing. The pilot acknowledged, then inquired about the status of the 'locator.' The controller advised that all components of the ILS, including the outer marker locator, were monitoring normal. Four miles from the outer marker/faf, the pilot was given a final vector, was cleared for the approach and was cleared to circle and land on runway 23. He acknowledged, then radio and radar contact with the aircraft were lost. The aircraft crashed approximately 2 miles southeast of the faf, while in a steep descent on a heading of 140°. No preimpact part failure/malfunction of the aircraft was found, though it was extensively damaged. About three weeks after a boating accident on 7/2/88, the pilot was admitted to a hospital and treated for a stroke, but an autopsy and toxicological checks failed to reveal any condition which would have prevented the pilot from performing his duties. Ad 88-13-01, concerning aircraft equipped with m-4c/d autopilots, was not complied with. All four occupants were killed.
Probable cause:
Failure of the pilot to maintain control of the aircraft, due to spatial disorientation, at about the time he was changing radio frequencies during an IFR approach.
Occurrence #1: loss of control - in flight
Phase of operation: approach - iaf to faf/outer marker (ifr)
Findings
1. Weather condition - clouds
2. Weather condition - icing conditions
3. Weather condition - low ceiling
4. (c) aircraft control - not maintained - pilot in command
5. (c) spatial disorientation - pilot in command
----------
Occurrence #2: in flight collision with terrain/water
Phase of operation: descent - uncontrolled
Final Report:

Crash of a Piper PA-31-310 Navajo in Martinsville: 8 killed

Date & Time: Nov 14, 1982 at 1830 LT
Type of aircraft:
Registration:
N3538R
Flight Phase:
Flight Type:
Survivors:
No
Schedule:
Martinsville - Greenville
MSN:
31-7912115
YOM:
1979
Crew on board:
1
Crew fatalities:
Pax on board:
7
Pax fatalities:
Other fatalities:
Total fatalities:
8
Captain / Total flying hours:
1250
Captain / Total hours on type:
300.00
Aircraft flight hours:
847
Circumstances:
The pilot filed an IFR clearance and took off on runway 30 after dark. At that time, the airport manager was in his living quarters, getting ready to eat his evening meal. He reported that from his position, the takeoff height looked normal. As the aircraft departed, he noticed no unusual sounds, except he heard what he thought was shots from a rifle. Another witness heard what he described as a loud pop and the sound of engine sputter followed by a crash sound. Later, the aircraft wreckage was found about 1,5 mile northwest of the airport. The investigation revealed that it had collided with trees and the wreckage was scattered over an area about 1,000 feet long. No preimpact malfunction or failure of the engines was found. The propeller blades were found twisted and bent. The flight controls were all accounted for and examined and no preimpact failures were found. No bullet impact marks were found on any piece of the wreckage. All eight occupants were killed.
Probable cause:
Occurrence #1: in flight collision with object
Phase of operation: takeoff - initial climb
Findings
1. (f) light condition - dark night
2. (c) proper climb rate - not maintained - pilot in command
3. (f) object - tree(s)
Final Report:

Crash of a Cessna 414 Chancellor in Gulfport

Date & Time: Apr 2, 1980 at 1846 LT
Type of aircraft:
Registration:
N1659T
Flight Phase:
Flight Type:
Survivors:
Yes
Schedule:
Gulfport - Greenville
MSN:
414-0452
YOM:
1974
Crew on board:
1
Crew fatalities:
Pax on board:
4
Pax fatalities:
Other fatalities:
Total fatalities:
0
Captain / Total flying hours:
2670
Captain / Total hours on type:
59.00
Circumstances:
After takeoff from Gulfportg-Biloxi Airport, while in initial climb, the twin engine airplane banked right, descended and crashed near the airfield. All five occupants were injured, the pilot and a passenger seriously. The airplane was destroyed.
Probable cause:
Engine malfunction during initial climb and subsequent controlled collision with ground for undetermined reasons. The following contributing factors were reported:
- Powerplant failure for undetermined reasons,
- The pilot failed to follow approved procedures,
- Improper emergency procedures on part of the pilot,
- Forced landing off airport,
- Right engine lost power,
- Right propeller not feathered.
Final Report:

Crash of a Convair CV-240-1 near McComb: 6 killed

Date & Time: Oct 20, 1977 at 1852 LT
Type of aircraft:
Operator:
Registration:
N55VM
Survivors:
Yes
Schedule:
Greenville - Baton Rouge
MSN:
3
YOM:
1948
Crew on board:
2
Crew fatalities:
Pax on board:
24
Pax fatalities:
Other fatalities:
Total fatalities:
6
Captain / Total flying hours:
6802
Captain / Total hours on type:
68.00
Copilot / Total flying hours:
2362
Copilot / Total hours on type:
38
Aircraft flight hours:
29013
Circumstances:
The airplane was completing a charter flight from Greenville, South Carolina, to Baton Rouge, Louisiana, carrying members of the Lynyrd Skynyrd Band. At 04:30 CDT on October 18, N55VM had arrived at the Greenville Downtown Airport, South Carolina, from Lakeland, Florida. While on the ground at Greenville, the aircraft had been refueled with 400 gallons of 100-octane, low-lead fuel. On October 20 at 16:02 CDT, the flight had departed Greenville Downtown Airport for Baton Rouge, Louisiana. The pilot had filed an IFR flight plan with the Greenville Flight Service Station. The route of flight was to be Victor 20 Electric City, direct Atlanta, direct La Grange, direct Hattiesburg Victor 222 McComb, V194 and to Baton Rouge. The pilot requested an altitude of 12,000 ft and stated that his time en route would be 2 hours 45 minutes and that the aircraft had 5 hours of fuel on board. The pilot was also given a weather briefing. After reaching 12,000 ft, N55VM proceeded according to flight plan and at 18:39 was cleared to descend to and maintain 6,000 ft. This clearance was acknowledged. At 18:40 the flight told Houston Air Route Traffic Control Center (ARTCC), "We're out of one two thousand for six thousand." About 18:42 N55VM advised Houston Center, "Yes, sir, we need to get to a airport, the closest airport you've got, sir." Houston Center responded by asking the crew if they were in an emergency status. The reply was, "Yes, sir, we're low on fuel and we're just about out of it, we want vectors to McComb, post haste please, sir." Houston Center gave the flight vectors to McComb and advised it to turn to a heading of 025°. N55VM did not confirm that a turn was initiated until 18:44. At 18:44:34, the pilot of N55VM said, "We are not declaring an emergency, but we do need to get close to McComb as straight and good as we can get, sir." At 18:45:12 N55VM advised Houston, "Center, five victor Mike we're out of fuel." The center replied, "Roger, understand you're out of fuel?" N55VM replied, "I am sorry, it's just an indication of it." The crew did not explain what that indication was. At 18:45:47 Houston Center requested N55VM's altitude. The response was, "We're at four point five." This was the last recorded communication between N55VM and the ARTCC. Several attempts were made by Houston Center to contact the flight but there was no response. At 18:55:51 an aircraft reported picking up a weak transmission from an emergency locator transmitter (ELT). The aircraft had crashed in heavily wooded terrain, during twilight hours, at an elevation of 310 ft near the town of Gillsburg, Mississippi. Both pilots, band members Ronnie Van Zant, Steve Gaines, Cassie Gaines, and the band's manager Dean Kilpatrick were killed in the accident. The aircraft was destroyed.
Probable cause:
Fuel exhaustion and a total loss of power on both engines due to crew inattention of fuel supply. Contributing to the fuel exhaustion were inadequate flight planning and an engine malfunction of undetermined nature in the right engine which resulted in a higher than normal fuel consumption. The following findings were reported:
- Both engines ceased to produce power because the aircraft's usable fuel supply was exhausted,
- The crew failed to monitor adequately the fuel flow, en route fuel consumption, and fuel quantity gages,
- The crew failed to take appropriate preflight and maintenance action to assure an adequate fuel supply for the flight,
- The crew operated the aircraft for an indeterminate amount of time before the accident with the right engine's mixture control in the auto-rich position.
Final Report:

Crash of a Cessna 402B in Greenville: 6 killed

Date & Time: May 11, 1973 at 1800 LT
Type of aircraft:
Operator:
Registration:
N2985Q
Survivors:
No
Schedule:
Concord - Greenville
MSN:
402B-0242
YOM:
1972
Crew on board:
2
Crew fatalities:
Pax on board:
4
Pax fatalities:
Other fatalities:
Total fatalities:
6
Captain / Total flying hours:
4471
Captain / Total hours on type:
290.00
Circumstances:
The crew started the descent to Greenville Airport in poor weather conditions with fog and limited visibility. On final approach, the pilot-in-command passed below the glide and below the MDA fixed at 2,200 feet, probably to establish a visual contact with the ground. While descending to an altitude of 1,400 feet, the twin engine airplane struck trees and crashed in a wooded area located few miles short of runway. The aircraft was destroyed and all six occupants were killed.
Probable cause:
Improper IFR operation on part of the crew. The following factors were reported:
- High obstructions,
- Low ceiling, fog,
- Descended below MDA at 2,200 feet,
- Hit trees at 1,400 feet,
- Witnesses reported hillside was in fog about halfway up.
Final Report:

Crash of a Rockwell Aero Commander 520 in Central Mills

Date & Time: Mar 7, 1973 at 1331 LT
Operator:
Registration:
N7324
Flight Phase:
Flight Type:
Survivors:
Yes
Schedule:
Greenville - Montgomery
MSN:
520-94
YOM:
1953
Crew on board:
1
Crew fatalities:
Pax on board:
2
Pax fatalities:
Other fatalities:
Total fatalities:
0
Captain / Total flying hours:
3000
Captain / Total hours on type:
360.00
Circumstances:
En route from Greenville, Mississippi, to Montgomery, Alabama, both engines failed almost simultaneously. The pilot reduced his altitude and attempted an emergency landing when the airplane struck tree tops and crashed in a wooded area located in Central Mills. While both passengers were slightly injured, the pilot was seriously wounded.
Probable cause:
Failure of both engines in flight caused by a fuel exhaustion. The following factors were reported:
- Inadequate preflight preparation,
- Mismanagement of fuel,
- Inadequate maintenance and inspection,
- Fuel system: vents, drains, tank caps,
- Fuel siphoning,
- Fuel exhaustion,
- High obstructions,
- One side of locking arm of the right fuel cap broken off, rust in break,
- Red fuel stains on wing and fuselage.
Final Report: