The Airframe Accumulated About 1/2″ Of Ice During The Descent

Location: Sparta, MI Accident Number: CEN21LA112
Date & Time: January 12, 2021, 17:00 Local Registration: N35718
Aircraft: Piper PA-32R-301 Injuries: 2 None
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General aviation – Personal

On January 12, 2021, about 1700 eastern standard time, a Piper PA-32R-301, N35718, was substantially damaged when it was involved in an accident at the Paul C. Miller Airport (8D4), Sparta, Michigan.

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 reported striking a snowbank short of the runway following a GPS approach. The airframe accumulated about 1/2″ of ice during the descent in instrument meteorological conditions. There were no malfunctions associated with the airplane before the accident.

According to a Federal Aviation Administration inspector, the airplane touched down about 18 ft short of the runway and encountered a small snowbank near the end of the runway. The landing gear collapsed, and the airplane skidded down the runway before coming to rest near the 1,000 ft. touchdown markings.

The airplane sustained substantial damage to the wings and fuselage.