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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 180463
Last updated: 21 April 2019
This record is based on the official accident investigation report. It has been locked for editing.

Date:17-OCT-2015
Time:08:41
Type:Silhouette image of generic RV4 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Van's RV-4
Owner/operator:Private
Registration: N999ZF
C/n / msn: 2407
Fatalities:Fatalities: 2 / Occupants: 2
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Category:Accident
Location:WSW of Cortland, NE -   United States of America
Phase: Manoeuvring (airshow, firefighting, ag.ops.)
Nature:Private
Departure airport:Crete, NE (CEK)
Destination airport:Lincoln, NE (LNK)
Investigating agency: NTSB
Narrative:
The private pilot and passenger were conducting a personal flight in the single-engine airplane. According to available radar data and an interview with the pilot's brother, the pilot completed several intentional low-altitude passes (at or below 100 ft above the ground) over his brother's property/residence. The pilot's brother, who witnessed the accident, stated that following the final low pass, the airplane pitched up into a climbing right turn. He stated that, during the climbing turn, the airplane suddenly pitched nose-down and descended rapidly. The airplane recovered briefly to a wings-level attitude before the wings rocked left and right and the airplane entered a descending right turn into terrain. A postaccident examination established that the airplane had crashed in a nose-low attitude and was destroyed by impact and postimpact fire damage. The examination did not reveal any anomalies that would have precluded normal operation of the airplane during the flight. Based on the witness description and the impact geometry, it is likely that the pilot did not maintain adequate airspeed during the climbing right turn, which resulted in the airplane exceeding its critical angle of attack and experiencing an aerodynamic stall at a low altitude. Due to the pilot's decision to intentionally maneuver at a low altitude, there was insufficient altitude to fully recover from the aerodynamic stall before impact.
Probable Cause: The pilot's decision to intentionally maneuver at a low altitude and his failure to maintain adequate airspeed during the climbing right turn, which resulted in the airplane exceeding its critical angle of attack and experiencing an aerodynamic stall.

Sources:

NTSB: https://www.ntsb.gov/_layouts/ntsb.aviation/brief.aspx?ev_id=20151017X31031&key=1


Revision history:

Date/timeContributorUpdates
17-Oct-2015 17:34 Geno Added
18-Oct-2015 16:11 Geno Updated [Aircraft type, Total fatalities, Damage, Narrative]
19-Oct-2015 16:18 Geno Updated [Registration, Cn, Operator, Source, Narrative]
02-Nov-2015 23:55 Geno Updated [Phase, Nature, Departure airport, Destination airport, Source]
21-Dec-2016 19:30 ASN Update Bot Updated [Time, Damage, Category, Investigating agency]
12-Dec-2017 20:01 ASN Update Bot Updated [Departure airport, Destination airport, Source, Damage, Narrative]