GENERAL INFORMATION FOR NTSB REPORT: ANC00LA027
Data Source NTSB AVIATION ACCIDENT/INCIDENT DATABASE
NTSB Report Nbr ANC00LA027
Event Id 20001212X20440
Local Date 02/09/2000
Local Time 1205
State AK
Airport Name WALES
Event Type ACCIDENT
Injury Severity SERIOUS
Record Status
Mid Air Collision NO
Event Location ON AIRPORT/AIRSTRIP

WEATHER INFORMATION
Weather Briefing Complete UNKNOWN
Basic Weather Conditions VISUAL METEOROLOGICAL COND
Light Condition DAY
Cloud Condition UNKNOWN
Cloud Height above Ground Level (ft) 0
Ceiling Height above Ground Level (ft) 500
Cloud Type OVERCAST
Visibility RVR (ft) 0
Visibility RVV (sm) 0
Visibility (sm) 2
Wind Direction (deg) 165
Wind Condition Flag U
Wind Speed (knots) 15
Wind Condition Indicated Unknown

AIRCRAFT INFORMATION
Aircraft 1
Type of Operation PART 135: AIR TAXI & COMMUTER
Registration Number N110JK
Aircraft Make PIPER
Aircraft Model PA31T
Aircraft Series 3
Aircraft Damage SUBSTANTIAL
Aircraft Fire NONE
Aircraft Explosion NONE
Aircraft Type AIRPLANE
Aircraft Homebuilt UNKNOWN
Phase of Flight APPROACH
Aircraft Use UNKNOWN
Category of Operation SCHEDULED
Flight Plan Filed VFR
Domestic/International DOMESTIC
Passenger/Cargo PASSENGER ONLY
Operator Name CAPE SMYTHE AIR SERVICE INC
Operator Doing Business As
Owner Name CAPE SMYTHE AIR SERVICE INC.
Number of Seats 10
Number of Engines 2
ELT Installed YES
ELT Operated YES
Departure Airport Id PAOM
Departure City NOME
Departure State ALASKA
Last Departure Point NO
Destination Local CRASH AT DESTINATION CITY
Destination Airport Id IWK
Destination City
Runway Id 35
Runway Length 4000
Runway Width 75
Air Carrier Operating Certificates YES
Air Carrier Other Operating Certificates UNKNOWN
Rotocraft/Agriculture Operating Certificate UNKNOWN
Cert Max Gross Wgt 9000
Landing Gear RETR

ENGINE INFORMATION

Aircraft 1 - Engine : #1
Engine Manufactuer P&W
Engine Model PT6A-11
Engine Horsepower 550
Engine Thrust HP

INJURY INFORMATION
Injury Summary for Aircraft 1
Fatal Serious Minor None
Crew 0 0 0 0
Pass 0 0 0 0
Total 0 2 7 0
Sequence of Events for Aircraft 1
Occurrence #1
IN FLIGHT ENCOUNTER WITH WEATHER
Phase of Operation: APPROACH - VFR PATTERN - BASE TO FINAL

Events Sequence for Occurrence #1 of Aircraft 1
Event Seq # Event Group Code Subject Modifier Personnel Cause/Factor
1 1 WEATHER CONDITION TURBULENCE, TERRAIN INDUCED FACTOR
2 2 WEATHER EVALUATION INADEQUATE PILOT IN COMMAND CAUSE
3 1 WEATHER CONDITION TAILWIND FACTOR

Occurrence #2
LOSS OF CONTROL - IN FLIGHT
Phase of Operation: APPROACH - VFR PATTERN - FINAL APPROACH

Events Sequence for Occurrence #2 of Aircraft 1
Event Seq # Event Group Code Subject Modifier Personnel Cause/Factor
1 2 FLIGHT INTO ADVERSE WEATHER INADVERTENT PILOT IN COMMAND CAUSE

Occurrence #3
IN FLIGHT COLLISION WITH TERRAIN/WATER
Phase of Operation: DESCENT - UNCONTROLLED

Events Sequence for Occurrence #3 of Aircraft 1
Event Seq # Event Group Code Subject Modifier Personnel Cause/Factor
1 1 TERRAIN CONDITION RUNWAY




AIRCRAFT 1 PRELIMINARY REPORT


On February 9, 2000, about 1205 Alaska standard time, a Piper PA-31-T3 airplane, N110JK, sustained substantial damage while landing at Wales, Alaska. The airplane was being operated as a visual flight rules (VFR) scheduled domestic passenger flight under Title 14, CFR Part 135, when the accident occurred. The airplane was operated as Flight 350 by Cape Symthe Air Service Inc., Barrow, Alaska. The airline transport certificated pilot, and one passenger received serious injuries. Seven passengers received minor injuries. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed. A VFR flight plan was filed. The flight originated at the Nome Airport, Nome, Alaska, at 1115. The director of maintenance for the operator reported the airplane was landing on runway 35. A mechanic for the company traveled to the scene, and described impact marks beginning 1,200 feet from the approach end of runway 35. The mechanic said it appeared to him that the airplane struck the runway with the left wing and left elevator, with the airplane yawed about 45 degrees to the left of the runway centerline, and that the airplane then slid off the left side of the runway, through a snow berm, and came to rest about 200 feet to the left of the runway. The director of maintenance said the weather conditions at Wales, reported by the Fairbanks, Alaska, Automated Flight Service Station (AFSS) were: Wind, 180 degrees at 15 knots, gust to 20 knots; visibility, 10 miles; clouds and sky condition, 1,500 feet broken; temperature, 30 degrees F. A Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) inspector, Fairbanks Flight Standards District Office (FSDO), interviewed six of the passengers after their return to Nome. He said the passengers reported the flight arrived over Wales, and the airplane spiraled down through a hole in the clouds. Once below the cloud layer, the pilot began a landing approach. During the turn onto the final approach segment, the airplane began oscillating violently, rolling several times left and right, with the angle of bank near 90 degrees each time. The airplane then struck the runway. In the Pilot/Operator report (NTSB form 6120.1/2) submitted by the company, the pilot included a statement. In his statement, the pilot said that during the approach for landing at Wales, he made three descending turns near the airport. Upon entering the downwind portion of the landing approach, the pilot said he noticed the wind sock at the airport was indicating a wind from the east about 25 knots. About mid-base, at 500 feet, the airplane encountered moderate turbulence and an increased rate of descent. He added engine power to arrest the descent. As the pilot turned toward the runway, the airplane encountered 3 to 4 rolling oscillations with a bank angle up to 90 degrees while descending toward the runway. The airplane collided with a snow berm along the west side of the runway. After the airplane came to a stop, the pilot said he evacuated the passengers, and noticed the wind sock had changed from a crosswind to a tailwind. The airport at Wales is located along the west coast of the Seward Peninsula, next to the Bering Sea. Rising, hilly terrain is located east of the airport. Runway 35 at Wales is 4,000 feet long, and 75 feet wide. The runway surface was packed snow. The Airport/Facility Directory - Alaska Supplement, contains the following in the airport remarks: "Unattended. Easterly winds may cause severe turbulence in vicinity of runway. Runway conditions not monitored, recommend visual inspection prior to landing..." The closest official weather observation station is Tin City Long Range Radar Station, which is located 5 nautical miles southeast of Wales. On February 9, 1999, at 1155, an automated weather observation system was reporting in part: Wind, 165 degrees (magnetic) at 15 knots; visibility, 2 statute miles; clouds and sky condition, 500 feet overcast; temperature, 26 degrees F; dew point, 24 degrees F; altimeter, 30.02 inHg.

AIRCRAFT 1 FINAL REPORT


The airline transport certificated pilot was landing a twin-engine turboprop airplane at a remote airport on a scheduled air taxi flight. Rising hilly terrain is located east of the airport. The pilot said that during the approach for landing, he noticed the airport wind sock indicating a wind from the east about 25 knots. When the pilot descended to 500 feet, about mid-base, the airplane encountered moderate turbulence and an increased rate of descent. He added engine power to arrest the descent. As he turned toward the runway, the airplane encountered 3 to 4 rolling oscillations with a bank angle up to 90 degrees while descending toward the runway. According to a company mechanic who traveled to the scene, it appeared that the airplane struck the runway about 1,200 feet from the approach end with the left wing and left elevator, while yawed about 45 degrees to the left of the runway centerline. The airplane then slid off the left side of the runway. After the collision, the pilot evacuated the passengers, and noticed the airport wind sock was indicating a tailwind. The Airport/Facility Directory contains the following in the airport remarks: 'Unattended. Easterly winds may cause severe turbulence in vicinity of runway.'

AIRCRAFT 1 CAUSE REPORT


The pilot's inadequate evaluation of the weather conditions, and his inadvertent flight into adverse weather conditions. Factors in the accident were terrain induced turbulence and a tailwind.


END REPORT