The Airplane Impacted A Utility Pole And The Terrain

Location: Decatur, TX Accident Number: CEN23FA038
Date & Time: November 18, 2022, 15:10 Local Registration: N6797L
Aircraft: Cessna 421C Injuries: 1 Fatal
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General aviation – Positioning

On November 18, 2022, at 1510 central standard time, a Cessna 421C airplane, N6797L, was destroyed when it was involved in an accident near Decatur, Texas. The pilot was fatally injured. The airplane was operated as a Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 positioning flight.

Flight tracking information indicated the airplane departed Denton Enterprise Airport (DTO), Denton, Texas, at 1459. The pilot proceeded about 30 miles west and climbed to an altitude of about 2,200 ft mean sea level (msl). About 1507, the airplane entered a descent and a left turn; both of which continued until the end of the data. The final data point was recorded at 1510:19. The airplane came to rest about 125 ft north-northeast of the final data point.

The airplane impacted a utility pole and the terrain. It came to rest upright about 165 ft from the utility pole, and a post-impact fire ensued. Burned vegetation was present over portions of the entire debris path. The left wing was separated outboard of the engine and located near the utility pole. The fuselage was damaged consistent with impact forces. Both wings and the fuselage exhibited thermal damage consistent with the postimpact fire. The flight controls remained attached to the airframe and no anomalies consistent with a preimpact flight control anomaly were observed. Postrecovery engine examinations are planned.