Aviation Accident Summaries

Aviation Accident Summary CEN21LA373

New Albany, MS, USA

Aircraft #1




The pilot reported that airplane’s electrical charging system malfunctioned during cruise flight in night visual meteorological conditions. He reduced the airplane’s electrical load by pulling the circuit breakers for everything besides the transponder. The pilot continued to the intended destination and manually extended the landing gear to conserve battery power; however, while in the traffic pattern, there was insufficient battery power remaining to turn-on the runway lights using the airplane’s radio. The pilot completed a low pass over the runway before deciding to go-around and reenter the traffic pattern and land. During the first landing, the airplane landed hard and bounced several times before the pilot increased engine power and aborted the landing. On the second landing, the airplane bounced 3 times before it settled onto the runway. The pilot applied brakes briefly before he increased engine power for another aborted landing because he saw the departure end of the runway approaching. The airplane’s left wing was substantially damaged when it impacted a fence post during the aborted landing. The pilot suggested that the accident could have been prevented had he used his available mobile phone to call the airport manager to turn on the runway lights, or if he had a hand-held radio to use after the battery became depleted. The alternator drive belt was not located after the accident and is believed to have separated from the airplane earlier in the flight.

Probable Cause and Findings

The pilot’s delayed decision to abort the landing that resulted in a collision with a fence post. Contributing to the accident was the failure of the alternator drive belt during cruise flight for unknown reasons and the subsequent inoperative electrical system when the airplane’s battery became depleted.


Source: NTSB Aviation Accident Database

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