This August 2009 accident report is provided by the National Transportation Safety Board. Published as an educational tool, it is intended to help pilots learn from the misfortunes of others.
Aircraft: Beech Sierra Injuries: 2 Fatal. Location: Sylva, N.C. Aircraft damage: destroyed.
What reportedly happened: The pilot had logged 1,382 hours, a majority in the Sierra. The accident happened at the end of a 3-hour-and-40-minute, IFR. cross-country flight. The pilot descended from 9,400 feet MSL to 3,100 feet MSL and entered the traffic pattern on a right downwind leg for runway 33. He flew a low approach over the runway and then entered a left traffic pattern about 350 feet above the airport elevation. He slowed the airplane from 91 knots to 60 knots.
According to a witness, the airplane touched down on the runway, then proceeded out of his view. The airplane crashed upside down into a wooded area beyond the departure end of the runway. The recorded groundspeed for the final portion of the flight never exceeded 63 knots. The calculated stall speed was 61 knots calibrated airspeed. The winds reported at an airport 12 nautical miles southwest were a left quartering tailwind at three knots.
Probable cause: The pilot’s failure to maintain an adequate airspeed during an aborted landing, which resulted in an aerodynamic stall.
For more information: NTSB.gov NTSB Identification: ERA09LA483.