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NTSB Surmises Mooney Pilot Died After Landing

March 2022 Taxiing Crash Ruled Result of Spontaneous Heart Attack

Location: Kerrville, Texas   Accident Number: CEN22LA164
Date & Time: March 31, 2022, 11:00 Local Registration: N21BS  Aircraft: Mooney M20E 
Aircraft Damage: Substantial  Defining Event: Medical event 
Injuries: 1 Fatal  Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General aviation - Personal

The National Transportation Safety Board published a final report regarding an accident that occurred in March of 2022 involving a Mooney M20E.

The narrative describes an unfortunate-in-some-ways but less-so in others instance where a pilot managed to bring his aircraft in for a successful landing, only to finally give up the ghost when safely on the ground. 

"After a local flight, the airplane landed, and a witness saw the airplane taxi over a grass- covered area and then onto the ramp at a higher-than-normal speed. The airplane struck a parked airplane, and the left wing became wedged underneath the empennage of the parked airplane." 

Responders found the pilot shortly after the commotion was noted, where they "discovered that the pilot was slumped over the flight controls and unresponsive. Emergency responders attempted CPR, but the pilot did not recover and was transported to a hospital where he was declared deceased. The airplane’s left wing sustained substantial damage. Examination of the airplane’s flight control, brake systems, and related systems did not reveal any mechanical anomalies that would have precluded normal operations."

It's a tragic series of events knowing the pilot was so close to emergency care, somewhat mitigated in knowing that the pilot managed to bring his steed back to earth intact - a mid-air infarction could have turned a single fatality incident into a mass casualty one, after all.

"The pilot’s cause of death was atherosclerotic and hypertensive cardiovascular disease in association with obesity; the manner of death was reported as natural. There was significant cardiovascular disease identified by the autopsy without evidence of significant trauma. His cardiovascular conditions placed him at increased risk for a sudden cardiac event. Given the medical findings and the circumstances of this accident, it is likely that the pilot’s incapacitation from a sudden cardiac event caused the accident."

FMI: www.ntsb.gov


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