He Remembered About One To Two Seconds Of The Spin And Had No Further Recollection Of The Accident

Location: Hartford, WI Accident Number: CEN21FA345
Date & Time: July 31, 2021, 11:30 Local Registration: N42522
Aircraft: Piper J3C-65 Injuries: 1 Fatal, 1 Serious
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General aviation – Instructional

On July 31, 2021, about 1130 central daylight time, a Piper J3C-65 airplane, N42522, was substantially damaged when it was involved in an accident near Hartford, Wisconsin. The flight instructor was fatally injured and the pilot receiving instruction was seriously injured. The airplane was operated as a Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 91 instructional flight.

The pilot receiving instruction reported that they had been practicing touch-and-go takeoffs and landings from runway 27 at the Hartford Municipal Airport (HXF) and had performed about 10 before the accident occurred. On the accident takeoff, when the airplane reached about 400-500 ft. agl, the instructor said, “engine failure, turn around for 09”. Both pilots were on the controls at this time and started a turn for runway 09 when the airplane entered a
“graveyard spin”. He reported that he remembered about one to two seconds of the spin and had no further recollection of the accident.

The airplane impacted a bean field about 1,100 ft. west of the departure end of runway 27 at HXF. Based on impact signatures, the airplane impacted in a left-wing low, nose low attitude, with the airplane coming to rest about 35 ft west of the initial impact point. A postaccident examination of the airplane confirmed control system continuity from the cockpit controls to all control surfaces. There were no separations in any of the flight control cables.

The left-wing spars were broken at the wing root, but the remainder of the wing remained predominately intact. Both left lift struts were bent and remained attached at the fuselage and wing. The right wing remained attached to the fuselage with little damage. Both right lift struts were bent and remained attached to the fuselage and wing. The forward lower fuselage at the firewall was pushed rearward. The engine remained attached to the fuselage. One propeller blade was bent aft and under the engine, and the crankshaft was partially separated just aft of the propeller flange. Examination of the engine confirmed rotation, thumb compression, valve train continuity, and ignition on all spark plug leads. All spark plugs were examined, and no anomalies were noted.

FMI: www.ntsb.gov