Engine Initially Ran Smooth But Began Knocking And Vibrating

Location: Lebanon, OH Accident Number: CEN21LA034
Date & Time: October 28, 2020, 11:45 Local Registration: N3537C
Aircraft: Cessna 182 Injuries: 2 None
Flight Conducted Under:

On October 28, 2020, about 1145 eastern daylight time, a Cessna 182T airplane, N3537C, was substantially damaged when it was involved in an accident near Lebanon, Ohio. The pilot and passenger were not injured. The airplane was operated as a Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 personal flight.

The pilot stated he and the passenger were ferrying the airplane from Clermont County Airport (I69), Ohio, to Warren County Airport (I68), Ohio following maintenance to install new avionics. While flying at 3,000 ft mean sea level (MSL) in instrument meteorological conditions the oil pressure dropped to zero. The engine initially ran smooth but began knocking and vibrating. The pilot declared an emergency and proceeded direct to I68, but was unable to maintain altitude. The airplane broke clear of the clouds about 600 ft above the ground and the engine subsequently lost all power. Unable to make the runway, the pilot elected to land in a harvested corn field. The pilot could not stop the airplane before it hit trees at the end of the field, damaging the airplane’s wings and fuselage.

The engine was examined, and a brightly colored plastic cap was found installed on the crankcase breather port, which completely blocked the port. The engine crankcase seal on the front of the engine was found dislodged and oil was found on the underside of engine compartment and cowling.

FMI: www.ntsb.gov