Apr. 14, Vero Beach, Fla. / Piper PA-44-180 Seminole


At about 11:39 EDT, a Flight Safety Piper Seminole crashed while attempting an emergency landing while on a check ride. Neither the check pilot nor the multiengine rating applicant were injured. While at 4,000 feet they simulated the failure of the right engine, shut down the engine and placed the propeller in the feathered position. After completion of the maneuver, the pilot-in-command was instructed to restart the right engine. As they were doing this, they heard a loud bang from the left side of the aircraft and looked out to see the left engine hanging down about 45 degrees from the normal position. They completed starting the right engine and turned toward the Vero Beach Airport for an emergency landing. While on final approach to runway 22, the examiner waited until about 300 feet agl before lowering the landing gear. After the gear was lowered, the left engine dropped down to about 65 degrees from the normal position. The increased drag caused the aircraft to veer to the left and he was unable to maintain directional control. A forced landing was made in a wooded area, about 1,000 feet from the runway.


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