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The NSTB has released an update on its ongoing investigation of the fatal crash of a Piper PA-28R-201 Arrow near Daytona Beach on April 4th, releasing details of its search to see if other Arrows exhibited similar fractures in the spar and spar attachment assemblies.
The Arrow that crashed was a 2007 model Arrow with 7,690 hours of flight time. The crash killed both occupants, Zachary Capra and FAA designated examiner John Azma. Capra was on a FAA checkride when the crash occurred after the left wing separated from the fuselage, putting the Arrow into an unrecoverable descent.
In its latest update issued on May 15, 2018, the NTSB said that its investigators found cracks in the spar cap of the right wing (the one that remained attached) and also in a second non-accident Arrow that had also been used exclusively for flight training. The board then had the wings of that Arrow reattached and used a bolt hole eddy current examination to inspect the wing using a method that Piper developed for the inspection. The inspection did find the cracks that NTSB investigators had identified.
Investigators also inspected nine other PA-28R-201s looking for signs of similar metal fatigue but found none in those other airplanes.
The NTSB is continuing its investigation into the crash.