Pilot Was Stationed In The Left Seat While The Two Passengers Shared The Right Seat Together

Location: Ardmore, OK Accident Number: CEN21LA047
Date & Time: November 7, 2020, 08:05 Local Registration: N331BW
Aircraft: Ercoupe 415 Injuries: 1 Serious, 2 Minor
Flight Conducted Under:

On November 7, 2020, about 0805 central standard time, an ERCO Ercoupe 415-C airplane, N331BW, sustained substantial damage when it was involved in an accident near Ardmore, Oklahoma. The commercial pilot sustained serious injuries and the two occupants sustained minor injuries. The airplane was operated as a Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 personal flight.

The purpose of the flight was for the pilot to take the two passengers for a sightseeing flight in the local area. The pilot was stationed in the left seat while the two passengers shared the right seat together. As the airplane flew over a neighborhood, the pilot executed a left bank. The one passenger reported that during the left bank, the pilot stated, “this is bad,” and he was unable to control the ailerons to return the airplane to level flight. The pilot attempted to move the control yoke multiple times, but to no avail. The pilot attempted to land the airplane to an open field; however, the airplane impacted a tree during the landing, and came to rest inverted on the ground.

The airplane sustained substantial damage to the fuselage, both wings, and the empennage. The wreckage is pending recovery for a future examination of the airframe and engine. The ERCO Ercoupe 415-C Instructional Manual states that the airplane is a “two-place, low wing monoplane of metal construction.” According to the Federal Aviation Administration Type Certificate Data Sheet (A-718) for the airplane, the airplane is limited to two seats. 

FMI: www.ntsb.gov