The reports republished here are from the NTSB and are printed verbatim and in their complete form.
Dadeville, Alabama/Injuries: 2 Fatal
The private pilot was conducting a cross-country flight at a cruise altitude of 5,000 ft mean sea level (msl) in day visual meteorological conditions when the airplane experienced a total loss of engine power. Over the next minute, the airplane continued a northerly track before it began a turn to the west as the controller identified the closest public airport, private strip, state highway, and open areas for potential forced landing sites, which the pilot acknowledged. About 3 minutes later, the airplane collided with trees and terrain and was consumed by postcrash fire. All engine accessories were destroyed by fire and could not be examined except for the engine-driven fuel pump, which revealed no anomalies. The engine displayed internal and external thermal damage, but internally displayed signatures consistent with normal wear and lubrication. Tree damage at the site was consistent with a rotating propeller at the time of tree contact.
An NTSB performance specialist plotted potential glide ranges and trajectories for the airplane from the assumed point of engine power loss. About the time of the loss of engine power, the airplane was about 1 mile abeam an abandoned airport. This airport was not plotted on the visual flight rules sectional chart nor was it visible to the controller, and it may not have been readily visible to the pilot due to its location on the right side of the airplane. However, the airplane's projected glide distance and trajectories indicated that the airplane was within gliding distance of numerous open fields as well as a four-lane divided highway with a large grass median. It could not be determined why the pilot chose to forgo any of the potential suitable forced landing sites.
Probable cause(s): A loss of engine power for reasons that could not be determined due to postcrash thermal damage to the engine accessories and the airframe. Contributing to the accident was the pilot's failure to navigate to any of the available forced landing sites within gliding distance of the airplane following the loss of engine power.
Westhampton Beach, New York/Injuries: 2 Fatal, 1 Serious
The commercial pilot, who was the owner of the airplane, was receiving a flight review from an instructor who was not familiar with the airplane make and model. The pilot stated that they did not discuss the potential differences between the accident airplane and the airplanes the instructor typically flew before the flight. After departing, they flew to a nearby airport to perform touch-and-go landings. The pilot was performing the first approach for landing in gusty wind conditions. About 100 ft above the runway, the flight instructor took control of the airplane. The airplane landed hard and bounced back into the air. The pilot applied full engine power in an attempt to avoid a stall when the flight instructor yelled, "hands off the yoke." The airplane subsequently experienced an aerodynamic stall/spin and impacted terrain. Postaccident examination of the airframe and engine revealed no anomalies that would have precluded normal operation.
The pilot stated that the design of the accident airplane resulted in a "sight picture" during the landing approach that appeared "very steep." He also stated that, although slipping with the wing flaps fully extended is prohibited in many airplanes, such a maneuver is not prohibited in the accident airplane. The pilot opined that the abnormal sight picture observed during the landing approach and his slipping of the airplane with the flaps extended may have caused the instructor to "[feel] the need to take control of the aircraft at such a critical point in flight."
Federal Aviation Administration Advisory Circular (AC) 61-98D provides information for pilots and flight instructors to use when complying with the requirements of the flight review. The AC states that, before giving a flight review in an unfamiliar aircraft, an instructor should obtain recent flight experience in that aircraft or sufficient knowledge of its limitations, characteristics, and performance.
Although the reason that the instructor took control of the airplane could not be determined, it is likely that he felt the pilot was performing an unsafe maneuver that required intervention; however, it is possible that he interpreted the pilot's actions as unsafe due to his lack of familiarity with the airplane and its operating characteristics. During the subsequent go-around following the bounced landing, the instructor exceeded the airplane's critical angle of attack, which resulted in an aerodynamic stall and spin.
Probable Cause(s): The flight instructor's exceedance of the critical angle of attack during a go-around, which resulted in an aerodynamic stall/spin. Contributing to the accident was the flight instructor's failure to familiarize himself with the flight characteristics of the unfamiliar airplane before conducting the flight review.