The non-certificated pilot reported that he conducted a low approach over the turf runway in Neshkoro, Wisconsin, at 50′ above ground level with the engine power at idle.
About halfway down the runway, he applied full power, but the engine did not respond. He entered a shallow left turn and slowed the Challenger II to stall speed before hitting trees. The pilot was seriously injured in the crash
While the condition of the propeller was consistent with the engine having no power at the time of impact, post-accident examination of the airframe and a test run of the engine revealed no anomalies that would have precluded normal operation, and a reason for the loss of power could not be determined.
The pilot was not certificated, and he did not hold a medical certificate. The pilot’s flight time was unknown.
His decision to maneuver the airplane at a low altitude and low airspeed precluded him from selecting a suitable forced landing site following the loss of engine power.
Probable cause: A total loss of engine power for reasons that could not be determined. Contributing to the accident was the non-certificated pilot’s decision to maneuver at low altitude.
NTSB Identification: CEN16LA123
This March 2016 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.