|37000 Feet||Browse and search NASA's
Aviation Safety Reporting System
|Local Time Of Day||1201 To 1800|
|Locale Reference||atc facility : blh|
|Altitude||msl bound lower : 10000|
msl bound upper : 10000
|Controlling Facilities||tower : lgb|
|Operator||general aviation : personal|
|Make Model Name||Small Aircraft, Low Wing, 1 Eng, Retractable Gear|
|Flight Phase||cruise other|
|Route In Use||enroute airway : zla|
|Function||flight crew : single pilot|
|Qualification||pilot : commercial|
pilot : instrument
|Experience||flight time last 90 days : 20|
flight time total : 550
flight time type : 14
other personnel other
|Qualification||other other : other|
|Anomaly||aircraft equipment problem : less severe|
non adherence other
|Independent Detector||other flight crewa|
|Air Traffic Incident||Pilot Deviation|
I was on an IFR flight plan from phoenix deer valley airport to palm springs regional. I was flying above the clouds at 10000 MSL until about 20 mi east of the colorado river at which time the clouds were only scattered. I passed over the blythe VOR and made my turn toward thermal VOR. About 10 mins later, I noticed that my DME was not functioning. I had also lost 2-WAY radio communication. Further inspection showed that none of my electrical equipment including vors and transponder were working. I squawked 7700 for 1 min and then 7600 in the event the transponder became functional. I realized that without navigation equipment it would be difficult to proceed to palm springs as filed in my flight plan. I knew that palm springs is a busy airport and that trying to fly there without 2-WAY communication would be very dangerous. I therefore did a 180 degree turn and landed at a less busy airport in blythe. After landing, I immediately called riverside FSS and informed them of what had happened. A mechanic in blythe checked the plane and felt the problem may be a faulty voltage regulator. He was unable to correct the problem but did charge the battery for about 20 mins. The ammeter showed a good charge on the battery so I continued the flight VFR into palm springs without incident. A mechanic in palm springs checked the plane and found the battery to be completely discharged. He charged the battery and then checked the voltage regulator and found that a wire was not adequately connected and had to be resoddered. The mechanic felt that this was unusual and could not be detected in preflight inspection. It took him 3 hours to find and correct the problem. Also, the plane had just completed its annual on the morning of this flight. I am unsure if I could prevent this problem from occurring again but I will pay closer attention to the ammeter to be sure the battery is charging properly. Also, I plan to buy a hand held navigation communication unit in the event this occurs again.
Original NASA ASRS Text
Title: LOSS OF PRIMARY ELECTRICAL SUPPLY IN ACFT EQUIP PROBLEM MALFUNCTION. DIVERSION TO ALTERNATE ARPT EXECUTED.
Narrative: I WAS ON AN IFR FLT PLAN FROM PHOENIX DEER VALLEY ARPT TO PALM SPRINGS REGIONAL. I WAS FLYING ABOVE THE CLOUDS AT 10000 MSL UNTIL ABOUT 20 MI E OF THE COLORADO RIVER AT WHICH TIME THE CLOUDS WERE ONLY SCATTERED. I PASSED OVER THE BLYTHE VOR AND MADE MY TURN TOWARD THERMAL VOR. ABOUT 10 MINS LATER, I NOTICED THAT MY DME WAS NOT FUNCTIONING. I HAD ALSO LOST 2-WAY RADIO COM. FURTHER INSPECTION SHOWED THAT NONE OF MY ELECTRICAL EQUIP INCLUDING VORS AND TRANSPONDER WERE WORKING. I SQUAWKED 7700 FOR 1 MIN AND THEN 7600 IN THE EVENT THE TRANSPONDER BECAME FUNCTIONAL. I REALIZED THAT WITHOUT NAV EQUIP IT WOULD BE DIFFICULT TO PROCEED TO PALM SPRINGS AS FILED IN MY FLT PLAN. I KNEW THAT PALM SPRINGS IS A BUSY ARPT AND THAT TRYING TO FLY THERE WITHOUT 2-WAY COM WOULD BE VERY DANGEROUS. I THEREFORE DID A 180 DEG TURN AND LANDED AT A LESS BUSY ARPT IN BLYTHE. AFTER LNDG, I IMMEDIATELY CALLED RIVERSIDE FSS AND INFORMED THEM OF WHAT HAD HAPPENED. A MECH IN BLYTHE CHKED THE PLANE AND FELT THE PROBLEM MAY BE A FAULTY VOLTAGE REGULATOR. HE WAS UNABLE TO CORRECT THE PROBLEM BUT DID CHARGE THE BATTERY FOR ABOUT 20 MINS. THE AMMETER SHOWED A GOOD CHARGE ON THE BATTERY SO I CONTINUED THE FLT VFR INTO PALM SPRINGS WITHOUT INCIDENT. A MECH IN PALM SPRINGS CHKED THE PLANE AND FOUND THE BATTERY TO BE COMPLETELY DISCHARGED. HE CHARGED THE BATTERY AND THEN CHKED THE VOLTAGE REGULATOR AND FOUND THAT A WIRE WAS NOT ADEQUATELY CONNECTED AND HAD TO BE RESODDERED. THE MECH FELT THAT THIS WAS UNUSUAL AND COULD NOT BE DETECTED IN PREFLT INSPECTION. IT TOOK HIM 3 HRS TO FIND AND CORRECT THE PROBLEM. ALSO, THE PLANE HAD JUST COMPLETED ITS ANNUAL ON THE MORNING OF THIS FLT. I AM UNSURE IF I COULD PREVENT THIS PROBLEM FROM OCCURRING AGAIN BUT I WILL PAY CLOSER ATTN TO THE AMMETER TO BE SURE THE BATTERY IS CHARGING PROPERLY. ALSO, I PLAN TO BUY A HAND HELD NAV COM UNIT IN THE EVENT THIS OCCURS AGAIN.
Data retrieved from NASA's ASRS site as of July 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.