Da-40 crashes in Utah, 4 dead

Discussion in 'Aviation Mishaps' started by MountainDude, Apr 24, 2022.

  1. MountainDude

    MountainDude Pre-takeoff checklist PoA Supporter

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  2. 3393RP

    3393RP En-Route

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    Photos of the crash site show the aircraft was heavily fragmented. Weather was good. Perhaps the cause was a slow and steep turn while viewing something on the ground.

    The pilot and his wife were the parents of four children under the age of ten. Accidents like this one tear at my heart. Those kids will have to endure the worst possible thing that could have happened. Losing both parents at that age is beyond tragic.
     
  3. midlifeflyer

    midlifeflyer Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Sad. They mention SR 14 near Cedar City. That's challenging terrain. I circled the airport. 14 is the road heading eastward into the mountains. :(
    upload_2022-4-25_7-0-43.png
     
  4. PaulS

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    Pretty new pilot, RIP.
     
  5. TrueCourse

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    How awful to see another fatality with friends or family together. Appears they were on their way to site see at Zion Park, which explains the the reason for heading E-SE after departure. On the previous leg they climbed gradually to 13,000 feet.
     
    Last edited: Apr 25, 2022
  6. Morgan3820

    Morgan3820 En-Route

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    When I started flying, my wife and I made an agreement that it couldn’t be just the two of us flying. Didn’t want to leave the daughter orphan. Now that the daughter is over 21 it’s OK To fly just the two of us.
     
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  7. flyingron

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    Four adults in a DA-40 at high DAs and in canyons. New pilot, probably no mountain training of significance. I think we know where this is heading.
     
  8. midlifeflyer

    midlifeflyer Touchdown! Greaser!

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    I guess that's possible but considering that the terrain rises from a paltry 4-5,000' were he lived and worked into the teens within 10 miles, I'd hesitate making that assumption.
     
  9. flyingron

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    I wouldn't. I learned to fly at BJC which goes from 6000' to the Continental Divide in 80 miles (and the front range in about five), and we still get tons of pilots who have had no mountain training.
     
  10. Country Flier

    Country Flier Pre-takeoff checklist

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    W&B posted on Kathryn's...781 lbs useful load then loaded with 4 adults??? Seems like it would be overweight even with 0 fuel.
     
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  11. Kyle N

    Kyle N Pre-Flight

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    Looking at the photos, pilot was all of 200. Other male was at least 170ish, and the two females really hard to say. W&B seems like a possibility for sure.

    Flightaware track log only shows them gaining 850 ft in the first 4 minutes of flight prior to crashing.
     
  12. Bill

    Bill Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    Anything more than 20g of 100LL aboard and this is a no go.
     
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  13. Sifossifoco

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    Based on my pretty modest experience of DA40, there is no way I would take off with four adults and any significant amount of fuel. It may or may not be the primary reason for the crash, but W&B surely must have been off the chart.
     
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  14. benyflyguy

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    What time of the year does density altitude start to come into play??
     
  15. Kenny Phillips

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    Anytime it's hot.
     
  16. texasclouds

    texasclouds Pattern Altitude

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  17. Trogdor

    Trogdor Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I concur. I just took my wife and son (5! Type-Rated in both 747 and Space Shuttle already) to Mystic (KGON) in a DA-40 and W&B was definitely a concern. You CAN do four but they may need to be strategically placed in the plane in addition to loosing some fuel.

    Now add high DA to the mix….sigh. This is horrible to read.
     
  18. midlifeflyer

    midlifeflyer Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Look back at the chart I posted. Cedar City is about 5500 MSL. On the ground. What would the temperature be for the density altitude to be equal to that? Now consider the accident terrain and how high they would have to have been and what standard temperature is for those altitudes.

    What time of year would density altitude not come into play?
     
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  19. exncsurfer

    exncsurfer Pattern Altitude

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    I got this from Wunderground weather history for Cedar City on that day, so it wasn't 'hot', but they're starting out somewhat high already:
    6:53 PM 49 °F 17 °F 28 % NNE 9 mph 0 mph 24.46 in 0.0 in Fair

    Standard temp for 5500 ft is 39F
     
    Last edited: Apr 25, 2022
  20. Dry Creek

    Dry Creek Pre-takeoff checklist

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    That's an interesting question I hadn't thought about before. Wouldn't it still be 59F/15C?
     
  21. Dan Thomas

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    Standard temp and pressure is 15°C (59°F) at sea level pressure. Standard lapse rate is 2°C per thousand feet, so at 5500' the standard temp would be 4°C. Anything above that and you have DA in play. It's not limited to hot days, just as carb ice isn't limited to cold days.

    https://e6bx.com/density-altitude/
     
  22. Dry Creek

    Dry Creek Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I should have thought about that. I even have an E6B sitting above my computer monitor. I wonder what the altimeter setting was that day. Gotta start with the pressure altitude according to my directions. Would the [absolute] barometric pressure be the 24.46 in an above post? That would seem close considering the standard barometric pressure lapse rate is averaged to 1" Hg per 1,000 feet, isn't it? So would they have used 29.96 for the altimeter setting?
    So, giving up on the E6B and grabbing the CX3, I used 5500' as the indicated altitude when set for 29.96 (24.46 + 5.5 based on 1"/1K') and the 49F. I show DA as 6082' (Press Alt as 5464').
     
  23. readytocopy995

    readytocopy995 Pre-Flight

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    I fly a very similar DA40 regularly and the W&B posted online is wrong somewhere. It says the maximum gross weight is 2646 lbs, yet the empty weight is 1754 lbs and the useful load is 781 lbs. 1754 + 781 = 2535 lbs.

    The early DA40's had a standard max takeoff weight of 2535 lbs, and there is a common gross weight modification (new gear legs) which increases it to 2646 lbs. The gear struts only help on landing at the higher weight. So either this didn't have the increased TOW, or it did and the useable load would actually be around 895 lbs (new gear legs ~3lbs lighter). Regardless of this, the climb characteristics are the same.

    What's so bizarre to me is taking off in a DA40 and bee lining for mountainous terrain you have zero hope of outclimbing.
     
  24. Tarheelpilot

    Tarheelpilot Final Approach PoA Supporter

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  25. midlifeflyer

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    Did you forget that standard temperature decreases 2C for every thousand feet?
     
  26. midlifeflyer

    midlifeflyer Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Yeah, I guess that correct based in the definition of density altitude as pressure altitude corrected for nonstandard temperature. But I think of 5500 feet as the same density altitude issue whether the airport is at 5500 MSL or at sea level. IOW, density altitude as performance altitude whether the temperature is standard or not.
     
  27. Jim Carpenter

    Jim Carpenter Pre-takeoff checklist

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    METARs from the time of crash (0043Z):

    KCDC 232353Z AUTO 02012KT 10SM OVC100 10/M07 A3010

    KCDC 240053Z AUTO 02008KT 10SM FEW095 09/M08 A3010
     
  28. Jim K

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    Seems to be a dramatic failure of training. I remember my instructor sitting down with me and showing me this video:


    He emphasized the importance of both DA and W&B, and the fact that a 4 passenger airplane usually isn't.
     
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  29. Bill

    Bill Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    Apologies to stumps everywhere, but this pilot was dumb as a stump.
     
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  30. Dan Thomas

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    Yup, 5500 feet altitude will have the same air density whether it's on the ground at 5500 or in the air at 5500. It's the temperature that makes things get bad. Standard lapse rate means that you can take off at sea level and expect 4°C at 5500 unless the air is very dry or saturated. On the ground at a 5500' ASL airport, the sun heats the ground, which heats the air above it, which reduces its density, and so conditions there are far different than at 5500' ASL above ground that is thousands of feet below you. That's when the accidents happen. Imagine a really warm day at that 5500' ASL airport, like maybe 30°C. Density altitude goes to 8576 feet. How well is that airplane going to climb? How long will that runway need to be? What happens to our horsepower in a normally-aspirated engine? There's a formula for that somewhere, but the C172N POH cruise chart tells me that at 8000 feet, at full throttle, standard temp, I can expect no more than 75% of the HP. Edit: And that's at cruise speed near redline RPM. You won't get that RPM in the takeoff roll or the climb, meaning that the hp is considerably less than 75%.
     
    Last edited: Apr 26, 2022
  31. Mxfarm

    Mxfarm Line Up and Wait

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    Hope is not a flight plan? wow.
     
  32. Country Flier

    Country Flier Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Every time I watch that video (I've watched it several times over the years) I find myself yelling at the pilot, as he passes landing spot after landing spot, barely out of ground effect, heading for the trees.
     
  33. luvflyin

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    I sometimes wonder in how many accidents, the pilot spent much time on sites like this one and others with Accident Forums. A wealth of knowledge to be gained from others experiences.
     
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  34. Flying Doc

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  35. Flying Doc

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    I kept trying to land it myself while at my desk. Could see it not gaining altitude and ground coming up faster than he was climbing. Once he was over the trees I think he knew it was too late as he tried to turn...probably making things worse. I am sure this was the pressure to not disappoint the group of guys in the plane by telling them that one has to stay behind to be picked up later.
     
  36. NealRomeoGolf

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  37. brcase

    brcase Pattern Altitude

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    I would be embarrassed to admit how many years it took me to link those two concepts together.
    I read it as the Standard temperature decrease is 2C for every 1000ft. Without any link to this referring to Standard Temperature decreases at those altitudes.

    But once you get that some things make a more sense like some Cessna performance charts. Now you know where they get the temperatures they use for 2500,5000, and 7500 feet.




    Brian
     

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  38. brcase

    brcase Pattern Altitude

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    Last edited: Apr 26, 2022