The pilot of the turboprop airplane reported that, after starting the Cessna U206 with a ground power unit (GPU) at the airport in Mexico, Missouri, he got out of the airplane. He disconnected the GPU and removed the wheel chocks.
The airplane started to roll down an incline. He jumped into the airplane through the aft cargo door and attempted to climb into the pilot’s seat, but to no avail. He pulled the fuel to cut off and the airplane hit trees. The airplane sustained substantial damage to the both wings and right wing lift strut.
The pilot told investigators that he had set the parking brake before starting the airplane, but either failed to set it completely or bumped it when he got out of the pilot’s seat to disconnect the GPU.
The pilot reported that there were no pre-accident mechanical failures or malfunctions with the airplane that would have precluded normal operation.
Probable Cause: The pilot’s failure to properly set the parking brake before exiting an operating airplane, which resulted in a runaway airplane and subsequent impact with trees.
This November 2019 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.