ASN logo
ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 146624
Last updated: 28 November 2021
This information is added by users of ASN. Neither ASN nor the Flight Safety Foundation are responsible for the completeness or correctness of this information. If you feel this information is incomplete or incorrect, you can submit corrected information.

Type:Silhouette image of generic TL20 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
TL Ultralight TL-2000 StingSport
Registration: N177N
Fatalities:Fatalities: 2 / Occupants: 2
Aircraft damage: Substantial
Location:Citrus orchard in Ventura County, east of Piru, CA -   United States of America
Phase: Manoeuvring (airshow, firefighting, ag.ops.)
Departure airport:Van Nuys, CA
Destination airport:Van Nuys, CA
Investigating agency: NTSB
The flight instructor and commercial pilot were conducting a flight review during daytime visual flight rules conditions. Multiple witnesses near the accident site reported observing the accident airplane descending in a nose-low attitude while spinning. Witness reports, findings from the wreckage examination and recovered GPS data are consistent with the airplane entering a stall as part of the flight review and a subsequent spin. A postaccident examination of the airframe and engine revealed no evidence of mechanical malfunctions or failures that would have precluded normal operation. The airplane was equipped with dual flight controls; however, it could not be determined which pilot was manipulating the controls at the time of the accident nor could it be determined why neither pilot was able to recover from the spin.
The airplane was also equipped with a rescue ballistic parachute system. The arming handle was found fractured from the cabin roof due to a force on the handle that loaded the adhesive joint in peel mode. The arming pin was not engaged within the arming handle and exhibited a permanent bend. Fretting wear deposits were present on the retaining pin shank, suggesting that the pin was most likely engaged within the handle a significant portion of the time when the airplane was in motion. It could not be determined if the arming pin was removed before the flight or at some point during the flight. The parachute was not deployed.
Medical record review revealed that the left seat pilot had significant preexisting heart disease. However, due to the limitations of the available medical evidence, the investigation could not determine if the pilot had an acute cardiac event during the flight that degraded his ability to operate the aircraft. Toxicology tests for the pilot were positive for Metoprolol, Ticlopidine, and Valsartan, which are commonly used to treat high blood pressure and angina, to control heart rate in some arrhythmias, and to reduce the risk of stroke.
Toxicology testing for the flight instructor, who was seated in the right seat, revealed evidence of previous marijuana use; however no active compound was detected in the postmortem blood, thus it is unlikely that he was experiencing acute impairment from marijuana at the time of the accident.

Probable Cause: The pilotís failure to recover from a stall, which resulted in a spin. Contributing to the accident was the instructorís inadequate remedial action.


FAA register:

Accident investigation:
Investigating agency: NTSB
Status: Investigation completed
Duration: 2 years and 5 months
Download report: Final report


Revision history:

05-Jul-2012 19:07 Geno Added
06-Jul-2012 04:43 harro Updated [Aircraft type, Embed code]
06-Jul-2012 04:46 Anon. Updated [Aircraft type, Departure airport, Embed code]
06-Jul-2012 08:11 Geno Updated [Registration, Cn, Operator, Phase, Nature, Source, Embed code]
07-Jul-2012 11:11 Geno Updated [Aircraft type, Destination airport, Source, Embed code, Narrative]
03-Aug-2012 17:46 Geno Updated [Time, Phase, Nature, Source, Embed code, Narrative]
21-Dec-2016 19:28 ASN Update Bot Updated [Time, Damage, Category, Investigating agency]
27-Nov-2017 20:57 ASN Update Bot Updated [Operator, Other fatalities, Departure airport, Destination airport, Source, Embed code, Narrative]

Corrections or additions? ... Edit this accident description