111 SR22 Icing Accident and Tailplane Stalls + GA News
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111 Max talks about a SR22 icing accident that killed a client. Meteorologist Scott Dennstaedt analyzes the weather, which had severe icing in clouds, and talks about tools pilots can use in preflight to identify possible icing. Ice often forms first on the tail. Tailplane stalls pitch an aircraft down and require a different recovery method than wing stalls. Speeds were too high to use the parachute.
The accident aircraft was a normally aspirated SR22 which had a TKS anti-icing system, but not the more robust FIKI system that permits flight in known icing. The aircraft didn’t have built-in oxygen, which may be why the aircraft was flown at the 14,000 feet, the maximum altitude at which a pilot can fly for up to 30 minutes without supplemental oxygen. The minimum en route altitude was 13,300 feet, so when the pilot encountered ice, he was unable to descend.
For the first eleven minutes at 14,000 feet, flight data appeared normal. But in the next three minutes the aircraft’s speed decreased by 60 knots, while climbing 600 feet, or about 200 feet per minute, suggesting the aircraft had picked up a heavy load of ice. The aircraft then disappeared.
Simulations show that in a tailplane stall, an aircraft pitches down sharply and rapidly increases speed. Most likely, the accident aircraft reached 200 knots in about five seconds, which would be too fast to deploy the CAPS parachute. Recovery from a tailplane are the opposite of a wing stall that pilots practice. To recover, a pilot needs to pull back on the yoke an reduce power.
SR22 Accident and Icing-Related Links
Preliminary NTSB Report for SR22 Utah crash
Flightaware.com Flight Track for the SR22
Kathryn’s Report and Photos for the SR22
Scott Dennstaedt’s Weather Book
Scott Dennstaedt’s Website
Cirrus Learning Portal – Icing Awareness Course
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