Features

June 1999 Issue

2 Prototypes Crash

New Lancair and Cirrus test planes kill their test pilots, one passenger

Early versions of the first two all-new single engine airplane designs in years crashed within a few months of each other, leaving their test pilots and a passenger dead and leaving many people wondering just what went wrong with the airplanes that personify the resurgence of the industry.

Both were popular and promising FAR 23-certified composite aircraft. Both were factory prototypes that were not in the final conformity (certifiable) configuration. Both so far leave far more questions than answers.

On Jan. 8, a Pacific Aviation Composites LC 40-550FG, a prototype of the Lancair Columbia, was executing the second of two apparently normal instrument approaches to Portland (Ore.) Inter...

To continue reading this entire article you must be a paid subscriber.

Subscribe to Aviation Safety

The monthly journal of risk management and accident prevention, is packed with useful, timely information on basic and advanced technique, accident analysis and, most important, practical articles on how you can develop the judgment that will keep you in the air and out of the NTSB's files.

Already subscribe but haven't registered for all the benefits of the website? Click here.

Subscriber Log In

Forgot your password? Click Here.