It will be very interesting to see what the NTSB determines as the probable cause of this accident. The second time around there is no indication of how high or low the aircraft was, unlike the first time where there was an observation that the aircraft "lost a significant amount of altitude."
NTSB Identification: LAX06FA087
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Monday, January 09, 2006 in Lancaster, CA
Aircraft: Cirrus Design Corp. SR20, registration: N526CD
Injuries: 2 Fatal.
This is preliminary information, subject to change, and may contain errors. Any errors in this report will be corrected when the final report has been completed.
On January 9, 2006, at 1343 Pacific standard time, a Cirrus SR20, N526CD, impacted terrain while attempting to return to the runway following a simulated engine failure at General William J. Fox Airfield (WJF), Lancaster, California. Gene Hudson Flight Training was operating the airplane under the provisions of 14 CFR Part 91. The certified flight instructor (CFI) pilot and the private pilot undergoing instruction (PUI) sustained fatal injuries; the airplane was destroyed. The local instructional flight departed Van Nuys, California, about 1250. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and no flight plan had been filed. The approximate global positioning system (GPS) coordinates of the primary wreckage were 34 degrees 45.048 minutes north latitude and 118 degrees 11.738 minutes west longitude.
The National Transportation Safety Board investigator-in-charge (IIC) interviewed the air traffic controllers who were on duty at the time of the accident. The controllers reported that the Cirrus reported inbound to WJF from the south and requested to do multiple touch-and-go landings. The Cirrus was cleared into the pattern and advised to use runway 6. After the Cirrus had completed a number of touch-and-go landings, the pilot requested to make a low approach to runway 6, and on climb out, simulate an engine failure, execute a teardrop maneuver, and land using runway 24. The tower advised that the winds were 060 degrees and 9 knots gusting to 15. The pilot acknowledged the wind report, and was cleared for the requested maneuver.
The controllers observed the Cirrus make the low approach to runway 6. At the departure end of the runway, the Cirrus made a slight right turn, followed by a sweeping left turn. The controllers said the Cirrus lost a significant amount of altitude before aborting the landing. The pilot then executed a go-around and the airplane flew north of the runway and parallel. The pilot requested to "try that again" and the tower controller advised the Cirrus that the winds were 060 degrees and 10 knots.
The controller observed the Cirrus make the low approach to runway 6; on the upwind leg, the airplane made a slight right turn followed by a sweeping left turn. The controller did not see the airplane impact the ground as a pillar in the control tower momentarily blocked the controller's view of the airplane.
Witnesses on the ground, just south of the accident site, observed the airplane make a left turn and then "spin into the ground."
The closest official weather observation station was General William J. Fox Airfield (WJF), which was located 1.5 nautical miles (nm) southwest of the accident site. The elevation of the weather observation station was 2,348 feet mean sea level (msl). An aviation routine weather report (METAR) for WJF was issued at 1356. It stated: winds from 070 degrees at 12 knots; visibility 10 miles; skies clear; temperature 15 degrees Celsius; dew point -04 degrees Celsius; altimeter 30.29 inHg.
Investigators from the Safety Board, the FAA, Cirrus Design, Teledyne Continental Motors (TCM), and BRS Parachutes examined the wreckage at the accident scene.
The first identified point of contact (FIPC) was a ground scar. The ground scar was about 35 feet long and along a magnetic heading of 110 degrees. The red navigation lens was found intact adjacent to the FIPC. The debris path was along a magnetic heading of 100 degrees.
The orientation of the engine was 020 degrees.
All components of the airplane were found in the immediate area of the wreckage site. The airplane was recovered for further examination.
Flight instructors: Do you ever instruct a maneuver such as the one going on here? Is it anything other than than simulating engine failure on takeoff followed by a return to the airport?