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Wow! Burned completely to nothing.  :(

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What on earth causes an airplane to fly upside down at warp speed into the ground, on final less than 3 miles off the end of the runway in absolutely perfect beautiful VFR conditions?

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The audio in the video is eerie. You can hear the rocket fire and see the chute deploy. The dogs are barking and kids are playing.  Didn’t hear any signs of an engine running. Doesn’t mean it wasn’t though. Sorry to hear he didn’t make it :(

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plenty of power in spin perhaps. Sad! Do we know the N number? Orcutt seems to be a bit to far away to be in the pattern for RWY 30 though - don't you think?

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5 minutes ago, kortopates said:

plenty of power in spin perhaps. Sad! Do we know the N number? Orcutt seems to be a bit to far away to be in the pattern for RWY 30 though - don't you think?

N883PJ...................Googlemaps Ralph Dunlap Elementary school................it's just a bit North of localizer back course 30..........I haven't spoken with tower folks yet. 

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This article shows a map of where it went down. It looks like it was a final for rwy 30 and could have been on the LOC-DME BC or RNAV approach or a just a straight in too.

https://www.dailynews.com/2020/05/20/plane-out-of-van-nuys-airport-crashes-in-santa-barbara-county-killing-pilot/

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2 minutes ago, kortopates said:

This article shows a map of where it went down. It looks like it was a final for rwy 30 and could have been on the LOC-DME BC or RNAV approach or a just a straight in too.

https://www.dailynews.com/2020/05/20/plane-out-of-van-nuys-airport-crashes-in-santa-barbara-county-killing-pilot/

Coming from VNY, yes, I'm assuming straight in final 30.  Dang it.................

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Flightaware shows a VFR flight, where the pilot came in as low as 800' msl (~500' AGL) over the field as slow as 71 kts ground speed and then flew east as if to enter  a left downwind for 30, climbing back up to 1700' MSL. Ground speed slows to just about 90 kts before comes down at nearly 2600 FPM on the last data point - all flightaware ads-b data. 

The elementary school is 2.1 miles from the threshold of rwy 30, and the plane was just finishing turning back inbound where it came down.

The Cirrus was a rental plane out of Encore Flight Academy at Van Nuys.

Edited by kortopates
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1 hour ago, MooneyMitch said:

What on earth causes an airplane to fly upside down at warp speed into the ground, on final less than 3 miles off the end of the runway in absolutely perfect beautiful VFR conditions?

Exceeding AOA as in an accelerated stall, or worse, a cross control stall. Take your pick. 
RIP. Prayers for his family and loved ones left behind.

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This is horrific and very sad.  Everyone stay safe out there.  These accidents are always sobering reminders of the risks involved in what we do.    

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very sad news. The frame rate on the cameras is 30 fps and it's only a few frames that catches the plane. High velocity impact. Normally stalls and/or spins are slower vertical speed. Hopefully the NTSB can figure out the cause.

Sent from my Pixel 3a using Tapatalk

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2 hours ago, PTK said:

Exceeding AOA as in an accelerated stall, or worse, a cross control stall. Take your pick. 
RIP. Prayers for his family and loved ones left behind.

Agree.............at the time of my initial post, I did assume, based on the fact that the crash site was very close to being on the 30 localizer course and that the plane was coming from VNY [from the east], that it was a straight in approach.

Now with Paul stating there had been maneuvering prior to the crash, yes, all the items you've mentioned certainly could come into the mix.

Horrible and humbling indeed.

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Unconfirmed, but a pilot from VNY reported it was a student pilot on their solo x-country.

If so, Wow, its sad to loose any pilot anytime, but especially a student this way.

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6 minutes ago, kortopates said:

Unconfirmed, but a pilot from VNY reported it was a student pilot on their solo x-country.

If so, Wow, its sad to loose any pilot anytime, but especially a student this way.

Oh my!  A student pilot on a solo cross country, in the Cirrus?  There is more to this story.  So very tragic.

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Interesting selfie photo of missing pilot taken minutes before departure of missing flight.Looks pretty low overcast at Catalina?Vfr into IMC?

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18 hours ago, MooneyMitch said:

What on earth causes an airplane to fly upside down at warp speed into the ground, on final less than 3 miles off the end of the runway in absolutely perfect beautiful VFR conditions?

I was wondering the same thing.  Hard to gauge speed but it looks like he was going pretty fast.

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17 hours ago, kortopates said:

Flightaware shows a VFR flight, where the pilot came in as low as 800' msl (~500' AGL) over the field as slow as 71 kts ground speed and then flew east as if to enter  a left downwind for 30, climbing back up to 1700' MSL. Ground speed slows to just about 90 kts before comes down at nearly 2600 FPM on the last data point - all flightaware ads-b data. 

The elementary school is 2.1 miles from the threshold of rwy 30, and the plane was just finishing turning back inbound where it came down.

The Cirrus was a rental plane out of Encore Flight Academy at Van Nuys.

Watching flightaware, did it seem like he did a go-around and was doing another pattern?  Perhaps flustered and too aggressive turning base to final at slow speed? 

I could not find SMX on liveatc to hear what was going on.  

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2 minutes ago, Bolter said:

Watching flightaware, did it seem like he did a go-around and was doing another pattern?  Perhaps flustered and too aggressive turning base to final at slow speed? 

I could not find SMX on liveatc to hear what was going on.  

Mea Culpa - I can remember when I had about 30 hours in the book and still a student pilot, I made a surely too slow and aggressive turn to base at an unfamiliar towered airport.  At Syracuse, I was slightly situationally disoriented and about to line up for the wrong runway but then realized the tower had told me to go to the other runway not the one I was expecting so I figured no problem, I can fix this don't want to get in trouble with scary guy in the tower, and I just yanked it over. Fortunately I was in an extremely forgiving airplane training airplane called the Alarus, but even still, I consider that the closest I cam to really ever doing bad things to myself in an airplane - and I really never appreciated that danger I had put myself in until sometime later.  This is why I feel that something like a Cirrus is too much airplane for a student pilot.

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54 minutes ago, aviatoreb said:

This is why I feel that something like a Cirrus is too much airplane for a student pilot.

My thoughts exactly. We all did stupid things as student pilots (and I continue to do stupid things on a regular basis) but fortunately most of us flew forgiving trainers during that stage in our piloting career.

I don’t get learning to fly in a Cirrus. I’m making my son do all his primary flight training in a 172 instead of our Ovation for exactly this reason (and the robustness of the 172 gear system is much more suited for his “carrier landings.”)

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1 hour ago, Bolter said:

Watching flightaware, did it seem like he did a go-around and was doing another pattern?  Perhaps flustered and too aggressive turning base to final at slow speed? 

I could not find SMX on liveatc to hear what was going on.  

You can see it here: https://flightaware.com/live/flight/N883PJ

Not that we'll know for some time, but it exactly looks like a base to final spin and a skidding turn could easily explain the plane rolling inverted on the inside wing in the turn; especially if the pilot was pulling back in pitch in the turn to maintain level which looks possible as well. But the flightaware data is much to coarse to make such conclusions yet. 

I looked for the liveATC as well, but nothing on SMX. Hard to imagine tower had him extend that far out but it does happen on occasion. 

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Once tower folks are at liberty (if at all) to share information, it will be quite interesting.   

Quite sad.

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