The pilot had purchased the RV-6A the day before, and was returning to his home airport when he elected to stop at an intermediate airport in Pikeville, Kentucky, for fuel.
After crossing the runway threshold, he reduced engine power and entered the landing flare. He felt the airplane “balloon up slightly, then stall and drop around 15 feet” onto the runway.
The airplane hit the runway, the nose landing gear collapsed, and it subsequently ran off the side of the runway, where it came to rest inverted, resulting in substantial damage to the rudder and minor injuries to the pilot.
Photographs of the airplane taken by the airport manager following the accident depicted the presence of rime ice along the leading edges of the wings, horizontal stabilizer, and vertical stabilizer.
The pilot reported he had not obtained a weather briefing, but had conducted a cursory review of enroute weather via an online vendor prior to the flight, and was not aware of icing conditions along his intended route of flight.
The NTSB determined the probable cause as the pilot’s failure to maintain airspeed during landing, which resulted in an aerodynamic stall. Contributing to the accident was the pilot’s failure to obtain a preflight weather briefing, and his subsequent flight into icing conditions, which resulted in the accumulation of ice on the airframe.
NTSB Identification: ERA15CA100
This January 2015 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.