ASN logo
ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 238778
Last updated: 21 September 2020
This information is added by users of ASN. Neither ASN nor the Flight Safety Foundation are responsible for the completeness or correctness of this information. If you feel this information is incomplete or incorrect, you can submit corrected information.

Type:Silhouette image of generic BE33 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Beechcraft F33A Bonanza
Registration: N3156W
C/n / msn: CE-480
Fatalities:Fatalities: 2 / Occupants: 2
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Substantial
Location:Baldwin County, Robertsdale, near Stapleton, AL -   United States of America
Phase: En route
Departure airport:Gulf Shores, AL (JKA)
Destination airport:Muscle Shoals, AL (MSL)
Investigating agency: NTSB
On July 28, 2020, about 1901 central daylight time, a Beech F33A, N3156W, was substantially damaged when it was involved in an accident in Malbis, Alabama. The private pilot and the passenger were fatally injured. The airplane was operated as a Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 personal flight.
The pilot held a private pilot certificate a rating for airplane single-engine land, he did not have an instrument rating. Family members reported that the pilot's original plan was to return home to the Northwest Alabama Regional Airport (MSL), Muscle Shoals, Alabama, on either July 29 or July 30, depending on the weather. The pilot had a business meeting scheduled for July 29.
On the afternoon of July 28 the pilot called flight service for a weather briefing. A review of that recorded briefing revealed that the pilot inquired about the weather for his route of flight from Jack Edwards National Airport (JKA), Gulf Shores, Alabama to MSL, for both the afternoon of July 28 and the following day July 29th, with his preference for the following day at 1200. The briefer responded "it doesn't look good" for the following day, with thunderstorms, rain showers, low ceilings and reduced visibility expected, and that visual flight rules (VFR) flight was not recommended. The pilot then inquired about the weather for a flight that afternoon around 1800. The briefer responded "That's not looking so good right now" and advised that there were thunderstorms and rain showers over the area, and a convective SIGMET for the southern portion of his route, which noted an area of thunderstorms moving eastward. For the northern portion of the route, a center weather advisory was in effect for developing thunderstorms, and "weather" was currently building along and on both sides of the route and around the destination. The briefer advised that VFR flight was not recommended. The pilot responded "It looks like my best shot is, I'm gonna probably go this afternoon because its going to be worse tomorrow…what I'm seeing… reported… online anyway is that everything is VFR as we speak … are you seeing anything… between here and Muscle Shoals that's not VFR?" The briefer responded "I have some clouds that are between 1,200 and 2,000 feet and…then some higher clouds…multiple layers of clouds, I don't see anybody that's reporting [instrument meteorological conditions] either visibility or ceilings but there are clouds that are you know getting down pretty close to it even though they're scattered. You get into the areas where the precipitation is, and it could be IFR." The pilot responded "Well, I feel confident that if I go during the daylight that I can, unless I got a solid line of thunderstorms, that I can go around a lot of precipitation." The pilot added "If I'm going VFR I'm going this afternoon, unless I got clouds that are getting low enough that I can't fly… and I haven't heard anything to tell me that." The briefer then offered a recent weather observation from Mobile, Alabama (about 25 miles west of the intended route of flight) which indicated a visibility of 1.5 miles in heavy rain and mist, and advised that areas along the route of flight that may be experiencing rain showers or thunderstorms may have the visibility or ceilings reduced to instrument meteorological conditions, as it did in Mobile. The pilot and briefer then discussed where the precipitation was occurring, and the location covered by the convective SIGMETs in the area before concluding the call.
According to a customer service representative at a fixed based operator (FBO) at JKA, the pilot and his wife spent about 1 hour in the FBO, and the pilot kept checking the weather in the flight planning room, and on a monitor in the lobby which displayed weather radar from Flight Aware.
The pilot called a family member about 1800 and said that he was unsure if he would be able to depart that evening and discussed returning to the house for dinner. About 15-20 minutes later, the pilot telephoned again, and said "they had a window and were leaving after all."




Revision history:

29-Jul-2020 04:07 Geno Added
29-Jul-2020 04:16 Geno Updated [Location]
29-Jul-2020 04:28 Geno Updated [Time, Aircraft type, Registration, Cn, Operator, Source]
29-Jul-2020 13:58 Anon. Updated [Source]
26-Aug-2020 09:10 ASN Update Bot Updated [Time, Operator, Nature, Departure airport, Destination airport, Source, Damage, Narrative]

Corrections or additions? ... Edit this accident description