Propeller-To-Engine Drive Belt Was Broken And Laying Across The Empennage

Location: Minneola, FL Accident Number: ERA21LA109
Date & Time: January 21, 2021, 09:45 Local Registration: N4469Z
Aircraft: Plante Challenger II Injuries: 1 Serious
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General aviation – Personal

On January 21, 2021, about 0945 eastern standard time, an amateur-built Challenger II, N4469Z, was substantially damaged when it was involved in an accident near the Florida Flying Gators Ultralight Airport (3FD4), Minneola, Florida.

The pilot/owner was seriously injured. The airplane was operating as a Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 personal flight.

According to a law enforcement official, who responded to the scene, the pilot stated he was inbound to 3FD4 and while flying with a tailwind, lost “propulsion.” The airplane then took a “nose-dive” and impacted terrain, resulting in substantial damage to the fuselage and both wings.

A post accident examination of the airplane and engine revealed that the propeller-to-engine drive belt was broken and laying across the empennage.

The belt was retained for further examination.