ASN Aircraft accident Cessna 501 Citation I/SP N66BK Smyrna Airport, TN (MQY)
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Status:Accident investigation report completed and information captured
Date:Saturday 29 May 2021
Type:Silhouette image of generic C501 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Cessna 501 Citation I/SP
Operator:JL&GL Productions LP
Registration: N66BK
MSN: 501-0254
First flight: 1982
Total airframe hrs:4781
Engines: 2 Pratt & Whitney Canada JT15D-1B
Crew:Fatalities: 1 / Occupants: 1
Passengers:Fatalities: 6 / Occupants: 6
Total:Fatalities: 7 / Occupants: 7
Aircraft damage: Destroyed
Aircraft fate: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location:near Smyrna Airport, TN (MQY) (   United States of America)
Phase: Initial climb (ICL)
Departure airport:Smyrna Airport, TN (MQY/KMQY), United States of America
Destination airport:Palm Beach-Palm Beach County Airport, FL (LNA/KLNA), United States of America
A Cessna 501 Citation I/SP was destroyed when it impacted Lake Percy Priest shortly after takeoff from Smyrna Airport, Tennessee (MQY). The pilot and six passengers were fatally injured.

The airplane departed at 10:53:06 and entered the clouds when making a climbing right turn to the east.
The airplane then began to descend, and air traffic control (ATC) asked the pilot to confirm altitude and heading. The pilot did not respond. After a second query from ATC, the pilot acknowledged the instructions. The airplane entered a climbing right turn from 1800 feet to 3000 feet. After ATC made several attempts to contact the pilot, the airplane entered a rapid descending left turn and impacted a shallow reservoir at a high rate of speed.

Weather at the time of the accident included a 1300 feet overcast.

Probable Cause:

Probable Cause: The pilot’s loss of airplane control during climb due to spatial disorientation.

Accident investigation:

Investigating agency: NTSB
Status: Investigation completed
Duration: 1 year and 10 months
Accident number: ERA21FA234
Download report: Final report



METAR Weather report:
15:56 UTC / 10:56 local time:
KMQY 291556Z 31010KT 10SM OVC013 14/12 A3004 RMK AO2 SLP178 T01390117

16:03 UTC / 11:03 local time:
KMQY 291603Z 30011KT 10SM OVC013 14/12 A3004 RMK AO2


photo of Cessna-501-Citation-I-N66BK
photo of Cessna-501-Citation-I-N66BK
flight track
photo of Cessna-501-Citation-I-N66BK
photo of Cessna-501-Citation-I-N66BK
accident date: 29-05-2021
type: Cessna 501 Citation I
registration: N66BK

This map shows the airport of departure and the intended destination of the flight. The line between the airports does not display the exact flight path.
Distance from Smyrna Airport, TN to Palm Beach-Palm Beach County Airport, FL as the crow flies is 1204 km (752 miles).
Accident location: Exact; as reported in the official accident report.

This information is not presented as the Flight Safety Foundation or the Aviation Safety Network’s opinion as to the cause of the accident. It is preliminary and is based on the facts as they are known at this time.
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Citation I

  • 377 built
  • 71st loss
  • 41st fatal accident
  • 5th worst accident
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