Accident Airgyro Aviation AG-915 Spartan , 27 Sep 2022

Abid

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I looked up the NTSB final report on the Hawley, Minnesota AR1 accident because your assessment did not align with my recollection Abid.

Location: Hawley, Minnesota Accident Number: CEN19FA218 Date & Time: July 11, 2019, 12:30 Local Registration: N14968 Aircraft: GIbb AR-1 Aircraft Damage: Destroyed Defining Event: Loss of control in flight Injuries: 1 Fatal Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General aviation – Personal

Analysis The pilot of the gyroplane departed on a local personal flight in visual meteorological conditions at an unknown time. Several witnesses saw the gyroplane descending straight down and impacting the ground near the departure airport. All major components of the aircraft were located at the accident site. No preimpact anomalies were noted with the gyroplane. The pilot had built the gyroplane from a kit about a year before the accident. As best as could be determined from his flight records, the pilot had received about 36 hours of flight instruction in the gyroplane. Autopsy and toxicology testing of the pilot revealed no evidence of physiological impairment or incapacitation, and the reason for the gyroplane's descent and impact with terrain could not be determined.

Probable Cause and Findings The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be: An in-flight loss of control and collision with terrain for reasons that could not be determined based on the available information.

Look at eye witness and Google plot captured in the docket. The eye witness that saw the gyro try to tighten up turn because he was overshooting the runway at fast speed. Google plot shows the overshot from alignment of runway. My speculation is he lost control at high speed trying to tighten up the turn and hit the ground at the same very high speed. The gyro burst into flames immediately as a result. The analog ASI was stuck at 110 mph. There is thread somewhere on this forum about it

MICHAEL HELM

Helm coming out of Hawley on Highway10, travelling westbound, when he saw the
helicopter flying southbound over the highway. The helicopter “veered” around to
travel north back towards the airport. He noted the helicopter was flying “very fast”.
When the helicopter turned, the rotors on the top of the helicopter looked as if they
were perpendicular to their original position., describing it as if they were “fan blades
that were facing him.” The helicopter disappeared behind a hill and he did not see
the crash.
 

Loren Jones

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Look at NTSB report on factual data. The people raising the objection did they know the pilot was brand new to gyroplanes.

I had already read that in depth. Three witnesses said it nosed straight down. A fourth said it spiraled down. What my original comment related to was what the NTSB said at the end of their report: "reasons that could not be determined based on the available information".

I was curious if anyone had further data that might shed light on the ultimate cause.
 

Abid

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I had already read that in depth. Three witnesses said it nosed straight down. A fourth said it spiraled down. What my original comment related to was what the NTSB said at the end of their report: "reasons that could not be determined based on the available information".

I was curious if anyone had further data that might shed light on the ultimate cause.

The NTSB said loss of control and collision before your quote as well. That is what I am telling you he lost control trying to do descending turn very sharply at quite high speed. The witness saw him turn (roll sharply) possibly close to 90 degrees bank angle. At that speed turning rolling that sharp and not coordinating a descending turn likely made him go out of control. He was a low hour new pilot.
If you think he should not go out of control or freeze up doing such maneuvers at 43 total hours of flight time, that is up to you. He did in my opinion. The witnesses saw the maneuvering. The google path shows him overshooting.
 
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Loren Jones

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The NTSB said loss of control and collision before your quote as well. That is what I am telling you he lost control trying to descending turn very sharply at quite high speed. The witness saw him turn (roll sharply) possibly close to 90 degrees bank angle. At that speed turning rolling that sharp and not coordinating a descending turn likely made him go out of control. He was a low hour new pilot.
If you think he should not go out of control or freeze up doing such maneuvers at 43 total hours of flight time, that is up to you. He did in my opinion. The witnesses saw the maneuvering. The google path shows him overshooting.
So ultimately inadequate training?
 

Abid

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So ultimately inadequate training?

He trained with Greg Spicola. I would find it hard to believe that Greg would have told him, fly anywhere in the pattern at such high speed while making such sharp descending turns. The normal pattern speed for AR-1 should be 60 to 70 mph. There is no reason to be faster than that in the pattern specially while making turns. What else can I say. Making a base to final at such angles of bank at such high speeds, you better know what you are doing. If you slip or skid it in hard at such speeds, good luck.
 

Doctordantodd

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This most recent accident is obviously under investigation, but I have never heard of a gyro being on fire in the air. That would be awful. Hope it isn't true.
 

Tyger

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From where was this data gleaned? I'm interested because it's in my neck of the woods and I've had people raise objections to gyroplanes by referencing this accident. It would be nice to point to the data that helps explain it.
I am curious what specific objections they have raised to you, and how those are based upon their understanding of that accident.
 

Abid

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This most recent accident is obviously under investigation, but I have never heard of a gyro being on fire in the air. That would be awful. Hope it isn't true.

Wiring circuit short that can burn up a wire because it was not protected by a circuit breaker or a fuse properly, could start a fire but we can't say for sure. One of the points of circuit breakers in aircraft is to protect wires from burning up. In such a case, pilot should turn off all switches and land immediately. Unfortunately in a fuel injected engine that means you are shutting the engine down as well

 

Vance

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If I compare certified aircraft with a typical experimental gyroplane it appears to me that a certified aircraft pays more attention to the details of the fuel system and managing the electrical system.

A 915 has high pressure fuel injection and even a small leak can cause big problems.

An oil leak can cause enough smoke to make people think the aircraft is on fire.

Fire emergency procedure is one of the things I discuss as part of the FAA required pre-flight briefing required to be given by the pilot in command before taking someone for a ride in any aircraft.
 

Loren Jones

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I am curious what specific objections they have raised to you, and how those are based upon their understanding of that accident.
It's more of a general "Those things are a death trap" followed by citing the accident. The fact that it was probably the ONLY gyroplane they were ever exposed to up in that area makes it 100% lethal in their minds. They're not long on specifics, which is why I'm trying to understand what might have happened.
 

Kevin_Richey

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It's more of a general "Those things are a death trap" followed by citing the accident. The fact that it was probably the ONLY gyroplane they were ever exposed to up in that area makes it 100% lethal in their minds. They're not long on specifics, which is why I'm trying to understand what might have happened.
I was driving back home through Iowa after towing my Yamaha-engined Sport Copter to Mentone in 2015. It was a hot mid-west summer day & I had stopped off the interstate for one of Wendy's delicious spicy chicken sandwiches coupled w/ one of their also-delicious chocolate Frostys.

A fellow came up to me inside the restaurant asking if I owned the gyrocopter sitting on the trailer in the parking lot. I nodded & asked him how he knew what a gyrocopter was. He then related that a best buddy of his had been killed flying one of the Bensen gyrocopters years back.

I asked if he was a pilot, like his buddy. He affirmed that they both were airplane guys. I expected some anger from him (like folks have who have lost a loved-one who died @ the controls of a gyro & that call gyros a death-trap) that I've experienced previously in my travels towing my gyro on a small, open, flatbed trailer.

I asked him if his buddy had tried to teach himself how to fly the Bensen gyro. Tears welled up in his eyes as he nodded that his friend had done so.

I expressed sorrow to him for his buddy & attempted to explain how all aircraft have an edge of the envelope that the pilot should stay away from, as well as the need for dual instruction, but he seemed lost in his memory.
 

Aviator168-aircraft

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Many people are fed with the idea that gyroplanes are like parachutes. They tell you that they fly like airplanes and are still safe even if the engine stops. People get the last part but forget that they are still airplanes and require as much training as any other airplane.
 

Tyger

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It's more of a general "Those things are a death trap" followed by citing the accident. The fact that it was probably the ONLY gyroplane they were ever exposed to up in that area makes it 100% lethal in their minds. They're not long on specifics, which is why I'm trying to understand what might have happened.
I see. That's what Daniel Kahneman would call availability bias. "I heard one recently crashed, and it's only one I've ever seen, so they must all be deathtraps."
It seems to me, also, that too many people feel the need to form strong opinions about things about which they actually know very little. Such opinions are sort of the definition of BS.
"Bullshit is unavoidable whenever circumstances require someone to talk without knowing what he is talking about. Thus the production of bullshit is stimulated whenever a person's obligations or opportunities to speak about some topic exceed his knowledge of the facts that are relevant to the topic. This discrepancy is common in public life, where people are frequently impelled – whether by their own propensities or by the demands of others – to speak extensively about matters of which they are to some degree ignorant. Closely related instances arise from the widespread conviction that it is the responsibility of a citizen in a democracy to have opinions about everything..."
– Henry G Frankfurt, On Bullshit
 
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Abid

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It's more of a general "Those things are a death trap" followed by citing the accident. The fact that it was probably the ONLY gyroplane they were ever exposed to up in that area makes it 100% lethal in their minds. They're not long on specifics, which is why I'm trying to understand what might have happened.

That is typical stuff. There is nothing you can do for people like that. If they actually looked at how many GA airplane accidents happened that week that were fatal, they would have to then assume all airplanes are death traps. To a degree anything that flies is indeed a death trap. If one is of the ilk that has attention lapses, know it all, it won't happen to me, I have enough training because I got to go attitudes, flying is not the best activity for them.
 

Tyger

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Isn't this based on the xenon? I remember someone (very reputable) here said the xenon is one of the planes that fit his requirements.
I really don't know much at all about this model/make, so I have no special opinion about it; but one man's requirements may not be what most others require. Anyway, it's you who said it was one of the most well designed. I can see it's pretty expensive. I figured you'd be able to tell me what's so good about it.
 
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