This December 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: LongEZ. Injuries: 1 Fatal. Location: Dexter, Ky. Aircraft damage: Destroyed.
What reportedly happened: A witness on the ground saw the experimental, amateur-built airplane in a steep bank. After about 30 seconds, he saw the airplane crash into trees and explode in flames.
The post-accident examination revealed that the engine’s single magneto P-lead terminal end had made contact with an adjacent fabric-covered steel braid oil cooler hose line. Closer examination of the ignition lead disclosed that chaffing had exposed the metal strand layer of the hose. The grounding of the magneto would have rendered the engine unable to produce power due to the lack of an ignition source. The condition of the propeller blades at the wreckage was consistent with the engine not operating at the time of ground impact.
Probable cause: The loss of engine power due to the chaffing and grounding of the single magneto’s ignition lead.
For more information: NTSB.gov; NTSB Identification: ERA10LA102