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Last updated: 23 October 2021
Status:Final
Date:Tuesday 23 April 2019
Time:12:00
Type:Silhouette image of generic C208 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Cessna 208 Caravan I
Operator:Tropic Ocean Airways
Registration: N366TA
MSN: 20800249
First flight: 1996
Total airframe hrs:9506
Engines: 1 Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6A-114A
Crew:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 1
Passengers:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 4
Total:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 5
Aircraft damage: Substantial
Aircraft fate: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location:Dry Tortugas National Park, FL (   United States of America)
Phase: Takeoff (TOF)
Nature:Private
Departure airport:?
Destination airport:Key West International Airport, FL (EYW/KEYW), United States of America
Narrative:
A Cessna 208 float-equipped airplane, N366TA, was substantially damaged during takeoff from Dry Tortugas National Park, about 58 miles west of Key West, Florida. The pilot and four passengers were not injured. The flight originated at Key West International Airport (EYW), Florida about 11:18, and was destined for Dry Tortugas National Park.
According to the pilot, he landed into an easterly wind, north of the island. After landing, he noticed that the wind was greater than forecast, and he was unable to taxi to the beaching location. He elected to return to EYW. He maneuvered the airplane into the wind and applied takeoff power. He described the takeoff run as "bumpy." As the airplane reached rotation speed, the left float departed the airplane. The airplane then nosed into the water. The pilot assisted the passengers out of the airplane and into a life raft. The airplane sank about 30 seconds later. A National Park Service vessel responded and assisted the pilot and passengers.
The wreckage came to rest in about 50 ft of water. Pending recovery, it will be retained for further examination.

Probable Cause:

Probable Cause: "The pilot's decision to attempt a takeoff in rough sea conditions, resulting in damage to the floats and the sinking of the seaplane."

Accident investigation:
cover
Investigating agency: NTSB
Status: Investigation ongoing
Accident number: ERA19LA156
Download report:

Sources:
» NTSB


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This information is not presented as the Flight Safety Foundation or the Aviation Safety Network’s opinion as to the cause of the accident. It is preliminary and is based on the facts as they are known at this time.
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