Sad News - Bud Warren down

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Autodidact

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Oklahoma
I think the lack of response is because no one knows what to say. This is very sad.
 

steveair2

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Jun 1, 2007
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Dallas Texas
Prayers sent to them and there family. I was just a few miles south in Cypress on Saturday flying my Uncles new Highlander.
Really crappy news. I really liked what they were doing with the PSRU's.
 

erikfranks

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Dec 27, 2010
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Escondido, CA
Terrible news. I really like what they did and I hope the company can continue. They had a fantastic product. Today I taxied my Geared Drives LS1 powered Velocity around the field. Great people both. They will be missed today and especially at Oshkosh where I've seen them the last several years.
 

BoeveP51

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Spring Hill, FL - formerly W. Ossipee, NH
Really sad news. I had been working with Bud and Phyllis on purchasing their PSRU. They were both very nice and outgoing. Even though I asked many stupid questions, Bud and Phyllis put up with me. They are certainly going to be missed by me. Their spirits will be around for a long, long time.

Don't know if Larry is listening or not but any quick info on whether Geared Drives is going to continue ??
 

Vigilant1

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The preliminary NTSB report on this crash has been published. Expect more information re: causation in the final report, though the post-crash fire will certainly complicate the investigation. Obviously, it's best to wait until more is known to draw lessons from this tragedy, though I'm sure we will all have our own ideas upon reading this account.

Condolences to all those who knew Bud and his daughter.

In total:

NTSB Identification: CEN11FA324
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Saturday, May 07, 2011 in Conroe, TX
Aircraft: WOODWARD HAROLD L RAVIN 500, registration: N913RA
Injuries: 2 Fatal.
This is preliminary information, subject to change, and may contain errors. Any errors in this report will be corrected when the final report has been completed.
On May 7, 2011, approximately 0855 central daylight time, a Woodward Ravin 500 experimental amateur built airplane, N913RA, impacted forested terrain shortly after takeoff from Lone Star Executive Airport (CXO), Conroe, Texas. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the accident. The personal flight was being conducted under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91. The pilot and student pilot rated passenger were fatally injured. The flight was originating at the time of the accident and was en route to Temple, Texas, for the airplane to be displayed at an aviation event.

According to CXO tower personnel, the pilot was cleared to depart runway 14 with a right turn on course. The airplane departed and as the pilot began his initial right turn he reported smoke in the cockpit. The pilot was cleared to land on any runway and giving the wind as being from 160 degrees at 8 knots. The airplane was observed to perform an approximate 240 degree right turn and crossed back over the departure runway before entering the left downwind leg for runway 14. While on the downwind leg of the traffic pattern the airplane was observed flying, “slow”, wings level, at an estimated altitude of 700 to 800 feet above the ground. While approximately 4,500 feet along the downwind leg the landing gear was extended. Shortly thereafter, the airplane started a descending left turn towards the closer runway 19. The airplane overshot the extended centerline to runway 19 and the airplane’s bank angle increased. The airplane continued in the descending left turn toward the runway until approximately 300 feet above the ground. At which point the airplane appeared to “stall” and impacted into forested terrain. A post impact fire ensued. Tower personnel reported that during the event they did not observe any smoke or flames coming from the airplane until impact.

A pilot rated eyewitness located near the crash site reported hearing what he described as an engine that was “screaming” and varying in RPM. When he saw the airplane it was flying “very slow” at an estimated altitude of 300 to 500 feet above the ground. As the airplane made a high bank angle turn back towards the airport the witness observed the nose and left wing drop before the airplane went out of sight. Seconds later he heard it impact trees followed by an explosion.

The airplane came to rest in an upright position about 1,600 feet out on the extended center line from the approach end of runway 19. The measured impact heading was 200 degrees magnetic.
 

GESchwarz

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Oct 23, 2007
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Ventura County, California, USofA.
At some point in my reading of aircraft publications I learned that the cause of this accident was due to a loose fuel line fitting at the boost pump. Can anyone confirm that?

Events like this are always very sobering. Aviation is a game with physics. Our opponent plays a perfect game every time. He never makes mistakes, he always catches ours, and he never forgives. As for us, we do make mistakes, all the time, and there is nothing we can do to prevent everyone of them. The best we can do is to do our best, and establish one or more layers of risk mitigation to catch us when we fall.

In this case, if it were a loose fuel line connection, would a post-maintenance fuel system leak test while running the boost pump have revealed the leak? Should all fuel line fittings be safety wired? Perhaps the B-nut was hand tightened but never torqued. Many manufacturing and maintenance organizations have detailed work instructions that require the verification of every critical step in a process. We should too if we are to survive in this game with physics.
 
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