|37000 Feet||Browse and search NASA's
Aviation Safety Reporting System
|Local Time Of Day||0601 To 1200|
|Locale Reference||airport : huf|
|Altitude||agl bound lower : 0|
agl bound upper : 3000
|Controlling Facilities||tower : huf|
|Operator||general aviation : instructional|
|Make Model Name||Small Aircraft, High Wing, 1 Eng, Fixed Gear|
|Flight Phase||cruise other|
|Function||flight crew : single pilot|
|Qualification||pilot : private|
|Experience||flight time last 90 days : 54|
flight time total : 101
flight time type : 93
|Affiliation||government : faa|
|Function||controller : local|
|Qualification||controller : non radar|
|Anomaly||aircraft equipment problem : critical|
|Independent Detector||other flight crewa|
|Resolutory Action||flight crew : declared emergency|
|Consequence||faa : reviewed incident with flight crew|
Aircraft had a complete power failure shortly after having a communication exchange with the intermediate stop airport (sky king). First indication was VOR went to 'off' and radio chatter ceased. Further check revealed VOR and communication were dead, fuel gauges on 0, ammeter was on 0 and flaps would not work. Ammeter stayed on 0 when landing light was actuated. Owners manual for aircraft states that if total electrical power failure occurs and master switch has been checked for proper position the aircraft should be landed at nearest airport as soon as practical. There were 2 airports near by, sky king straight ahead and not yet in sight, and hulman field, which was on my left in view, and within easy glide distance if necessary. I chose hulman for other reasons too. Sky king has narrow runway and my plane had inoperative flaps and wind direction at sky king required a bit of crosswind approach at landing. Also I thought there might be better facs for electrical problem service at hulman. This latter was conjecture since I didn't know the situation at either field. Once decision was made to land at hulman an upwind slow speed pass was made parallel to the runway in use with the tower on my left and at pattern altitude plus 500'. Then a left turn was made at midfield, crosswind to confirm wind direction and runway in use this leg was a descending maneuver to pattern altitude. The wing tips were waggled to get tower's attention. Didn't see any signal. Another turn was made downwind and again the wings were waggled for tower's attention. A jet departed on the runway I expected to land on. Keeping eye alternately on tower and downwind for any aircraft on final, I made base turn. I noticed a light twin aircraft had taxied onto the runway and held at the threshold. I adjusted my approach to land right after the other plane was rolling. The first signal I saw from the tower was when I was on the taxiway and had paused before crossing another runway. The tower gave a green light and I acknowledged by waggling the rudder. At FBO where I pulled in to have the electrical problem diagnosed and fixed I received a call from the FAA controller to discuss the unannounced landing and what my problem was. He said he did not see my plane until it was on the taxiway. Subsequent check of aircraft showed broken (partially) battery lead cable near the battery connection. Insulation had browned and was hot. No further problem with remainder of trip.
Original NASA ASRS Text
Title: GA SMA LOSS OF ALL ELECTRICAL MAKES EMERGENCY LNDG AT NEAREST ARPT.
Narrative: ACFT HAD A COMPLETE PWR FAILURE SHORTLY AFTER HAVING A COM EXCHANGE WITH THE INTERMEDIATE STOP ARPT (SKY KING). FIRST INDICATION WAS VOR WENT TO 'OFF' AND RADIO CHATTER CEASED. FURTHER CHK REVEALED VOR AND COM WERE DEAD, FUEL GAUGES ON 0, AMMETER WAS ON 0 AND FLAPS WOULD NOT WORK. AMMETER STAYED ON 0 WHEN LNDG LIGHT WAS ACTUATED. OWNERS MANUAL FOR ACFT STATES THAT IF TOTAL ELECTRICAL PWR FAILURE OCCURS AND MASTER SWITCH HAS BEEN CHKED FOR PROPER POS THE ACFT SHOULD BE LANDED AT NEAREST ARPT AS SOON AS PRACTICAL. THERE WERE 2 ARPTS NEAR BY, SKY KING STRAIGHT AHEAD AND NOT YET IN SIGHT, AND HULMAN FIELD, WHICH WAS ON MY LEFT IN VIEW, AND WITHIN EASY GLIDE DISTANCE IF NECESSARY. I CHOSE HULMAN FOR OTHER REASONS TOO. SKY KING HAS NARROW RWY AND MY PLANE HAD INOP FLAPS AND WIND DIRECTION AT SKY KING REQUIRED A BIT OF XWIND APCH AT LNDG. ALSO I THOUGHT THERE MIGHT BE BETTER FACS FOR ELECTRICAL PROB SVC AT HULMAN. THIS LATTER WAS CONJECTURE SINCE I DIDN'T KNOW THE SITUATION AT EITHER FIELD. ONCE DECISION WAS MADE TO LAND AT HULMAN AN UPWIND SLOW SPD PASS WAS MADE PARALLEL TO THE RWY IN USE WITH THE TWR ON MY LEFT AND AT PATTERN ALT PLUS 500'. THEN A LEFT TURN WAS MADE AT MIDFIELD, XWIND TO CONFIRM WIND DIRECTION AND RWY IN USE THIS LEG WAS A DSNDING MANEUVER TO PATTERN ALT. THE WING TIPS WERE WAGGLED TO GET TWR'S ATTN. DIDN'T SEE ANY SIGNAL. ANOTHER TURN WAS MADE DOWNWIND AND AGAIN THE WINGS WERE WAGGLED FOR TWR'S ATTN. A JET DEPARTED ON THE RWY I EXPECTED TO LAND ON. KEEPING EYE ALTERNATELY ON TWR AND DOWNWIND FOR ANY ACFT ON FINAL, I MADE BASE TURN. I NOTICED A LIGHT TWIN ACFT HAD TAXIED ONTO THE RWY AND HELD AT THE THRESHOLD. I ADJUSTED MY APCH TO LAND RIGHT AFTER THE OTHER PLANE WAS ROLLING. THE FIRST SIGNAL I SAW FROM THE TWR WAS WHEN I WAS ON THE TXWY AND HAD PAUSED BEFORE XING ANOTHER RWY. THE TWR GAVE A GREEN LIGHT AND I ACKNOWLEDGED BY WAGGLING THE RUDDER. AT FBO WHERE I PULLED IN TO HAVE THE ELECTRICAL PROB DIAGNOSED AND FIXED I RECEIVED A CALL FROM THE FAA CTLR TO DISCUSS THE UNANNOUNCED LNDG AND WHAT MY PROB WAS. HE SAID HE DID NOT SEE MY PLANE UNTIL IT WAS ON THE TXWY. SUBSEQUENT CHK OF ACFT SHOWED BROKEN (PARTIALLY) BATTERY LEAD CABLE NEAR THE BATTERY CONNECTION. INSULATION HAD BROWNED AND WAS HOT. NO FURTHER PROB WITH REMAINDER OF TRIP.
Data retrieved from NASA's ASRS site as of August 2007 and automatically converted to unabbreviated mixed upper/lowercase text. This report is for informational purposes with no guarantee of accuracy. See NASA's ASRS site for official report.