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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 134892
Last updated: 25 June 2018
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Type:Silhouette image of generic AC11 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Rockwell 112A
Owner/operator:Gpw Aeroservices
Registration: N1381J
C/n / msn: 381
Fatalities:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 2
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location:Bedford, MA -   United States of America
Phase: Landing
Departure airport:Hyannis, MA (HYA)
Destination airport:Nashua, NH (ASH)
Investigating agency: NTSB
While descending through 5,500 feet on a moonless night, thick black smoke filled the cabin. The two pilots' initial assessment was that the smoke may have been the result of an electrical fire, so the pilot in command shut off the master switch and vented the cabin. The second pilot grabbed his flashlight and in checking the engine gauges, found there was no oil pressure. The pilots felt they were about to lose engine power, so the second pilot turned on the master switch to notify approach control, and requested vectors to a nearby airport. Approximately 1 minute later, about 4,500 feet, the engine began to vibrate, and lost power. The vibration intensified, and the engine began to shake violently. The pilot in command shut down the engine so it wouldn't break the engine mounts. The second pilot flew the airplane at best glide airspeed, and about 5-6 miles north of the airport, both pilots realized that they were not going to be able to reach it. They looked for a place to land, and found an area that did not appear to have people or homes in it. Approaching the ground, the pilots saw trees in the landing light, and the second pilot maneuvered the airplane to avoid any direct tree hits. Just before ground impact, the pilot in command turned off the master switch. After hitting several trees, the airplane came to a stop, and became engulfed in flames. Because the doors wouldn’t open, the pilots climbed out an opening where the windshield had been. A post-accident engine examination revealed that the #2 piston connecting rod cap had separated, and that there was a hole in the side of the engine case. The number 1, 3, and 4 cylinders were covered with black residue, and the number 2 cylinder was coated with white residue. The engine was last overhauled in September 1990, about 700 operating hours earlier. A service instruction recommended that an engine be overhauled in the 12th year after the previous overhaul, if it had not accumulated the recommended hourly time between overhauls (1,800 hours for that model engine) by that time.

Probable Cause: Failure of the #2 piston connecting rod cap, which resulted in a hole in the engine crankcase and a loss of engine power. A factor was dark night lighting condition.



Revision history:

21-Dec-2016 19:26 ASN Update Bot Updated [Time, Damage, Category, Investigating agency]
07-Dec-2017 17:36 ASN Update Bot Updated [Other fatalities, Departure airport, Destination airport, Source, Narrative]

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