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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 41144
Last updated: 15 July 2019
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Date:29-MAY-1996
Time:18:35 CDT
Type:Silhouette image of generic PAY2 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Piper PA-31T Cheyenne II
Owner/operator:Mid South Engineering Co
Registration: N333LM
C/n / msn: 31T-7920052
Fatalities:Fatalities: 5 / Occupants: 5
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location:Malvern Municipal Airport, Malvern, Hot Springs County, Arkansas -   United States of America
Phase: Take off
Nature:Test
Departure airport:Malvern Municipal Airport, Malvern, Arkansas (FAA LID: M78)
Destination airport:Malvern Municipal Airport, Malvern, Arkansas (FAA LID: M78)
Narrative:
On May 29, 1996, at approximately 18:35 central daylight time (CDT), a Piper PA-31T, N333LM, owned and operated by Mid South Engineering Company, Hot Springs, Arkansas, was destroyed after impacting terrain shortly after take off from Malvern Municipal Airport, Malvern, Arkansas. All 5 occupants, the airline transport rated pilot and 4 passengers, were fatally injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed for the Title 14 CFR Part 91 flight. A flight plan was not filed.

The aircraft had just completed scheduled maintenance by a facility located at the airport. According to maintenance manager, the pilot invited 4 mechanics (all of the mechanics participated in the scheduled maintenance and were friends of the pilot) from the facility to join him for the routine post maintenance acceptance flight. The manager reported that he observed the aircraft execute a ground run up and taxi onto runway 21. After observing what he described as a normal take off roll, he went inside a hangar (he did not witness the take off or initial climb). Shortly thereafter, the aircraft impacted terrain approximately 1 1/2 miles south of the departure end of the runway.

Two witnesses who heard, but did not see the aircraft, were interviewed and provided statements to the investigator-in-charge. While working in their yard, approximately 3/4 miles from the departure end of the runway, they heard the aircraft's engine noise. One of them described the noise as being "very loud." The other described the engines as being "wound out" and at "full speed." Both witnesses stated that they routinely hear engine noise as airplanes either land or depart from the airport. No other airplanes were reported to be in the vicinity at the time of the accident.

Two eye-witnesses were interviewed and provided statements. One of these witnesses, located approximately 1/2 miles south of the accident site, stated that he "heard the plane coming." After looking up, he observed the aircraft "flying level" toward him, and "then it flew straight up, and the engines got louder." He recalled that he "could see the bottom of the plane", and then "it fell to the left and went behind the trees." After hearing a "noise", he observed "smoke" and then called the police. Another eye-witness, located approximately 1/2 mile southeast of the accident site, stated that she heard a "really strange sounding" airplane (similar to airplanes she heard on "cartoons" when they were "spiraling to the ground"). She then observed the "aircraft heading for the ground" in a nose low attitude. She stated that the aircraft disappeared behind trees during the descent and did not observe the impact.

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident as follows: The pilot's failure to maintain control of the airplane after takeoff.

Registration N333LM cancelled by the FAA on April 28, 1999

Sources:

1. NTSB Identification: FTW96FA230 at https://www.ntsb.gov/_layouts/ntsb.aviation/brief2.aspx?ev_id=20001208X05749&ntsbno=FTW96FA230&akey=1
2. FAA: http://registry.faa.gov/aircraftinquiry/NNum_Results.aspx?omni=Home-N-Number&nNumberTxt=333LM
3. http://www.ascendworldwide.com/download/Cust/WAAS167_Complete.pdf
4. http://www.baaa-acro.com/1996/archives/crash-of-a-piper-pa-31-cheyenne-in-arkansas-5-killed/


Revision history:

Date/timeContributorUpdates
24-Oct-2008 10:30 ASN archive Added
21-Dec-2016 19:23 ASN Update Bot Updated [Time, Damage, Category, Investigating agency]
20-May-2017 18:38 TB Updated [Source]
07-Aug-2017 08:38 TB Updated [Aircraft type]
13-Sep-2017 19:18 Dr. John Smith Updated [Time, Location, Nature, Departure airport, Destination airport, Source, Narrative]

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