Accident Cirrus SR22T N821SG,
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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 196649
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Date:Thursday 13 July 2017
Type:Silhouette image of generic S22T model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different    
Cirrus SR22T
Registration: N821SG
MSN: 0185
Year of manufacture:2011
Total airframe hrs:348 hours
Engine model:Continental TSIO-550 SER
Fatalities:Fatalities: 2 / Occupants: 4
Aircraft damage: Destroyed
Location:West of Sonoma Skypark Airport (0Q9), Sonoma, CA -   United States of America
Phase: Take off
Departure airport:Sonoma, CA (0Q9)
Destination airport:San Jose-Reid-Hillview Airport, CA (RHV/KRHV)
Investigating agency: NTSB
Confidence Rating: Accident investigation report completed and information captured
The private pilot and three passengers departed on a personal cross-county flight. Several witnesses located at or near the airport reported that, while the airplane was climbing, they heard the engine "sputter" or "pop" a few times as the airplane flew over their position. Subsequently, they heard a louder sound and, shortly afterward, observed the deployment of the airplane's parachute system. Most of the witnesses observed the airplane descending just before they lost sight of it at tree-top level, which was just before the airplane impacted the ground. A review of the airplane's flight data revealed that, shortly after takeoff, the airplane's engine lost power. At that time, the airplane's airspeed decreased and approached the stall speed; the stall warning system activated twice. From the first stall warning to the end of the data, the airplane's airspeed was between 71 and 75 knots and the airplane was in a bank of about 27°; the airplane's stall speed is 76 knots at a bank angle of 30°. The airplane's parachute system was deployed when the airplane's altitude was about 130 ft mean sea level.

When engine power was lost, the pilot failed to maintain an adequate airspeed and did not follow the emergency procedures for a low-altitude engine failure in the Cirrus SR22T Pilot's Operating Handbook (POH), which were to lower the nose, establish an appropriate glide airspeed, and accomplish a landing straight ahead, turning only to avoid obstructions.

Postaccident examination of the airframe and engine revealed no anomalies that would have precluded normal operation. However, examination of the top spark plugs in the ignition system revealed that their insulators were dark in color, consistent with a rich fuel/air mixture.

The POH stated that the electric fuel pump switch must be set to the "Boost" position for takeoff and climbout. However, the flight data indicated an excessively high fuel flow to the engine that was consistent with the electric fuel pump switch selected to the "High Boost/Prime" position (which is used for priming the fuel pump before engine start) at the time of the loss of engine power. The flight data indicated that the fuel flow increased and peaked at a level that was about 6.5% higher than the average climbout fuel flow just before the power loss. The National Transportation Safety Board's investigation of an accident involving another Cirrus SR22T airplane found that the airplane experienced an engine power loss following that pilot's inadvertent activation of the High Boost/Prime switch, and flight data from that airplane revealed a similar increase in the fuel flow before the loss of engine power.

For this accident, both the fuel flow and manifold pressure exceeded the manufacturer's parameters in the POH, peaking about the time of the engine power loss. Further, given that the engine's speed exceeded the manufacturer's upper warning range just before the loss of engine power, the engine components and the fuel system were likely operating effectively before the loss of power. Thus, it is likely that the accident pilot improperly selected the High Boost/Prime position during the climbout, which resulted in the excessive fuel flow to the engine and the subsequent loss of engine power.

Probable Cause: The pilot's failure to maintain adequate airspeed after a loss of engine power, which resulted in an aerodynamic stall at a low altitude from which the pilot was unable to recover. The loss of engine power resulted from the pilot's improper selection for the electric fuel pump setting during climbout, which caused an excessively high fuel flow to the engine. Contributing to the accident was the pilot's failure to follow the airplane manufacturer's emergency procedures for a low-altitude loss of engine power.

Accident investigation:
Investigating agency: NTSB
Report number: WPR17FA150
Status: Investigation completed
Duration: 3 years 1 month
Download report: Final report


FAA register:



Revision history:

14-Jul-2017 01:10 Geno Added
15-Jul-2017 07:55 Iceman 29 Updated [Embed code]
15-Jul-2017 22:19 Iceman 29 Updated [Embed code]
24-Jul-2017 19:01 Anon. Updated [Total fatalities]
27-Jul-2017 05:22 RJCrofton Updated [Total fatalities]
28-Jul-2017 07:12 Anon. Updated [Total fatalities]
28-Jul-2017 07:13 harro Updated [Narrative]
01-Sep-2020 16:55 ASN Update Bot Updated [Operator, Nature, Departure airport, Destination airport, Source, Embed code, Narrative, Accident report, ]
01-Sep-2020 19:06 harro Updated [Destination airport, Source, Embed code, Narrative, Accident report, ]

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