Accident Piper PA-31-310 Navajo N546BA,
ASN logo
ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 37960
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.

Date:Tuesday 5 January 1982
Type:Silhouette image of generic PA31 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different    
Piper PA-31-310 Navajo
Owner/operator:Empire Airlines
Registration: N546BA
MSN: 31-709
Engine model:LYCOMING TIO-540-A2C
Fatalities:Fatalities: 2 / Occupants: 2
Aircraft damage: Destroyed
Location:6.7 miles from Oneida County Airport, Utica, New York -   United States of America
Phase: En route
Nature:Passenger - Scheduled
Departure airport:Oneida County Airport (UCA/KUCA) Utica, New York)
Destination airport:Washington National Airport (DCA/KDCA) Washington, DC
Investigating agency: NTSB
Confidence Rating: Accident investigation report completed and information captured
On January 5, 1982, Empire Airlines Flight 141, a scheduled commuter fight between Utica,'New York, and Washington, D.C., crashed while attempting an approach to Tompkins County Airport, Ithaca, New York, an en route stop. The flight crew had contacted Elmira approach control and had received instructions for an instrument landing system (ILS) approach to runway 32 at Tompkins County Airport.

About 07:40 EST, the co-pilot declared an emergency stating that the airplane had a landing flap problem; he later stated that only one flap was down. He also stated that they were not able to maintain altitude and that the airplane was descending. Elmira approach lost radar contact with the airplane about 07:41 EST; the last radio transmission from the flight was recorded about 07:45 EST.

The airplane crashed in a wooded area near three suburban residences. The pilot and copilot, the only persons aboard, were killed. There were no injuries to personnel on the ground. The airplane was destroyed by impact and post impact fire

The National Transportation Safety Board determines that the probable cause of the accident was excessive wear of the left flap motor/flexible drive spline and certification of the airplane with a flap system that did not meet the requirements of Civil Air Regulation 3.339. The worn spline caused a split flap condition of 34 that resulted in marginal flight control authority. Moderate low altitude turbulence and transient low level wind shear may have contributed to the upset and loss of control.

Accident investigation:
Investigating agency: NTSB
Report number: DCA82AA009
Status: Investigation completed
Duration: 8 months
Download report: Final report


1. NTSB Identification: DCA82AA009 at
2. FAA:

Revision history:

24-Oct-2008 10:30 ASN archive Added
23-May-2015 21:04 Dr. John Smith Updated [Time, Aircraft type, Location, Nature, Departure airport, Destination airport, Source, Embed code, Narrative]
23-May-2015 21:07 Dr. John Smith Updated [Destination airport, Embed code]
21-Dec-2016 19:23 ASN Update Bot Updated [Time, Damage, Category, Investigating agency]
22-Apr-2017 18:48 TB Updated [Location, Destination airport, Source, Embed code]
27-Sep-2017 20:31 Dr. John Smith Updated [Time, Location, Source, Narrative]
27-Sep-2017 20:32 Dr. John Smith Updated [Narrative]
12-Feb-2020 15:08 harro Updated [Source, Accident report, ]
19-Jul-2020 17:15 BEAVERSPOTTER Updated [Cn]

Corrections or additions? ... Edit this accident description

The Aviation Safety Network is an exclusive service provided by:
Quick Links:

CONNECT WITH US: FSF on social media FSF Facebook FSF Twitter FSF Youtube FSF LinkedIn FSF Instagram

©2024 Flight Safety Foundation

1920 Ballenger Av, 4th Fl.
Alexandria, Virginia 22314