The National Transportation Safety Board has released its results following an investigation of a plane crash near Scio that killed two people in 2012.
The probable cause of the crash was the pilot’s decision to perform acrobatics in a plane that was prohibited from those maneuvers, resulting in the failure of the right wing spar, according to the NTSB.
The official statement also said that the plane’s operating limitations document stated the plane was prohibited from performing aerobatics.
The crash of the plane registered as a McDaniel RV-6 CH kit plane on Nov. 26, 2012, killed Jeff Kropf of Halsey and Timothy Carter of Portland. Carter owned the plane.
The report did not indicate who was piloting the plane at the time of the crash.
According to a witness, the plane lost its right wing and dropped about 1,000 feet. The report said the wing was found almost 1,100 feet from the wreckage.
NTSB said the purpose of the flight was for the pilot-rated passenger to show the owner/pilot how to perform rolls in the experimental plane.
In its report the NTSB said that the plane’s logbook had no record of aerobatic flights having been satisfactorily accomplished during its flight test period.
Examination of the wing determined that the upper and lower spar-caps had failed. The spar-caps were found to be substantially different from the RV-6 model’s manufacturer’s design — one that can be approved for aerobatic maneuvers.
The investigation found that the spar cap design to be similar to an RV-3 model, which it noted was susceptible to failure in aerobatic flight.
As a result, the NTSB determined that: “Because the purpose of the flight was performance of an aerobatic maneuver (rolls) and because the airplane’s wing spar cap design was not suitable for aerobatic flight, it is likely that at some point during the flight, an aerobatic maneuver was performed that weakened the wing and the final steep turn was then sufficient to overload the wing."