Accident Cirrus SR22 N729SR,
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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 17528
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Date:Tuesday 22 April 2008
Type:Silhouette image of generic SR22 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different    
Cirrus SR22
Owner/operator:Mcair Llc
Registration: N729SR
MSN: 2115
Year of manufacture:2006
Total airframe hrs:333 hours
Engine model:Continental IO-550-N
Fatalities:Fatalities: 3 / Occupants: 3
Aircraft damage: Destroyed
Location:Toledo Bend - East of Hemphill, Texas -   United States of America
Phase: En route
Departure airport:Tupelo, MS (TUP)
Destination airport:Houston, TX (DWH)
Investigating agency: NTSB
Confidence Rating: Accident investigation report completed and information captured
The instrument-rated private pilot, along with two passengers, departed on an instrument flight rules (IFR) cross-country flight. The pilot requested to climb to 10,000 feet and was cleared to do so. Shortly thereafter, the pilot reported that he was level at 10,000 feet. Approximately 33 minutes later, air traffic control (ATC) radioed the pilot with a frequency change; however, the pilot did not respond. Repeated attempts to contact the pilot were unsuccessful as the airplane continued flying a straight course, while at 10,000 feet, towards its intended destination. One hour and 33 minutes after the last pilot contact, the autopilot equipped airplane made a rapid descending right turn before radar contact was lost. In the area of the last radar contact, several fishermen reported observing the accident airplane descending nose down and impacting the surface of a reservoir. The airplane's wreckage came to rest about 40 feet below the surface of the water. Calculations revealed that if the pilot maintained full throttle and did not switch fuel tanks during the flight, the selected fuel tank would have been nearly empty by the time it reached the area near the crash site; thus a loss of engine power could have occurred.

Multiple dives were conducted in an attempt to recover the wreckage. The ballistic parachute was found in its storage bag and had not been deployed. The fiberglass fuselage and wings were not located. In addition, the avionics equipment with nonvolatile memory, that would have recorded the accident flight, was not located. Maintenance records revealed that in the previous year and a half, the airplane’s number six exhaust header was found to be cracked and was replaced three separate times; however, the exhaust system was not recovered and therefore could not be examined to see if possible carbon monoxide leaks were present. The airplane was not equipped with a factory installed carbon monoxide detector, and investigators were unable to determine if an aftermarket unit was installed. Due to the limited remains that were recovered, an autopsy could not be accomplished on the pilot or passengers. In addition, adequate specimens were not recovered to perform toxological testing for the presence of carbon monoxide or cyanide.

No reported radio communications with the airplane for the hour prior to the accident, straight and level flight consistent with flying with an autopilot with no deviations, estimated fuel calculations indicating that the airplane could have exhausted all its fuel by the time it reached the accident location, a repeated history of exhaust leaks, no evidence of an on-board carbon monoxide detector, and radar showing the airplane in an unarrested descent prior to impact, suggest that the pilot and passengers may have been incapacitated during the last portion of the flight. However, due to the limited recovery of airplane wreckage and human remains to test for carbon monoxide, incapacitation could not be confirmed and the reason for the unarrested descent into the lake could not be determined.
Probable Cause: A loss of control for undetermined reasons.

Accident investigation:
Investigating agency: NTSB
Report number: DFW08FA111
Status: Investigation completed
Duration: 2 years and 3 months
Download report: Final report




Revision history:

22-Apr-2008 22:35 robbreid Added
23-Apr-2008 07:02 Updated
19-May-2008 04:20 Fusko Updated
14-Jul-2008 23:17 sdbeach Updated
21-Dec-2016 19:14 ASN Update Bot Updated [Time, Damage, Category, Investigating agency]
21-Dec-2016 19:16 ASN Update Bot Updated [Time, Damage, Category, Investigating agency]
21-Dec-2016 19:20 ASN Update Bot Updated [Time, Damage, Category, Investigating agency]
03-Dec-2017 10:44 ASN Update Bot Updated [Operator, Other fatalities, Departure airport, Destination airport, Source, Narrative]

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