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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 45230
Last updated: 2 April 2020
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Type:Silhouette image of generic PTS2 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Pitts S-2B
Owner/operator:Connair, Inc.
Registration: N399DB
C/n / msn: 5137
Fatalities:Fatalities: 2 / Occupants: 2
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location:Longmont, CO -   United States of America
Phase: Manoeuvring (airshow, firefighting, ag.ops.)
Departure airport:Boulder, CO (1V5)
Destination airport:
Investigating agency: NTSB
Several witnesses observed the airplane prior to the accident. One witness said the airplane had been doing aerobatics in the area - "loops and figure eights" The witness said as the airplane proceeded eastward, it got lower in altitude. The witness said, "He was about 500 feet over the field, he did a low loop and came back up the backside of the loop in what appeared to be an attempt at a hammerhead stall. The engine sputtered and quit and there wasn't room for a recovery." Another witness said he was driving north and saw the airplane overhead. He said the airplane had just done a loop and was going up vertically. The witness said he lost sight of the airplane. When he saw the airplane again, it was coming down at nearly an 80-degree angle until it impacted into the field. A third witness said he heard the sound of the airplane's engine change suddenly. He said he looked up to see the airplane low to the ground and heading straight down. He said, "The engine sound was as if the engine had quit." A fourth witness said the airplane made several loud pops as it was heading towards the ground. An examination of the airplane's engine showed no fuel in the fuel distribution manifold, distribution lines, nozzles, fuel filter, or in the fuel lines from the main fuel tank to the engine fuel pumps. Approximately 0.10 ounces of fuel was retrieved from the engine driven fuel pump. The fuel boost pump was broken aft and showed no evidence of fuel. All other engine components examined and tested revealed no pre-impact anomalies. No other anomalies were found with the airplane.

Probable Cause: the pilot's improper in-flight planning and decision that resulted in fuel exhaustion and his entering an aerobatic maneuver with insufficient altitude. Factors contributing to the accident were the low airspeed and low altitude, and the fuel exhaustion.



Revision history:

28-Oct-2008 00:45 ASN archive Added
21-Dec-2016 19:24 ASN Update Bot Updated [Time, Damage, Category, Investigating agency]
08-Dec-2017 18:32 ASN Update Bot Updated [Operator, Source, Narrative]

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