MOONEY M20J GOES DOWN RIGHT AFTER TAKEOFF IN DINSMORE CA. KILLING 4
The Wolk Law Firm recently litigated a takeoff crash of a Mooney M20J in Kansas City Mo.
In that instance two people were killed when the engine lost power intermittently and finally control was lost and it crashed.
The initial NTSB analysis was that water in the fuel caused the engine interruption and it doubled down on the fiction that a rainstorm the night before departure caused water to flood into the fuel tanks that the pilot allegedly did not check after refueling.
It turned out that not only was there a drought and no such rainstorm (that occurred a year later) but the fuel caps on the tanks did not leak and the pilot was seen on surveillance video checking for water.
The cause of the crash, found by The Wolk Law Firm was a failed magneto that had been overhauled some 4.7 flight hours before. A jury trial resulted in a 9-million-dollar verdict for the plaintiffs.
The magneto in Mooney aircraft is know as a single drive dual mag, in other words a single drive from the engine turns both magnetos in one housing which makes the term “redundant” a euphemism for disaster. The single drive dual mag is not redundant and has been responsible for many accidents and incidents in Mooneys and all other aircraft that use them.
The other recurrent issue in Mooneys is the difficulty in draining water out of the fuel tanks. The fuel drains are raised from the bottom of the fuel tank and care must be exercised to drain enough fuel to get all the water out.
The fact that this airplane flew four hours that day without problems means that likely a mechanical failure in the engine such as the magneto may have caused this crash.
Careful investigation by the Wolk Law Firm is vital to determining the cause of airplane crashes especially when post-crash fires damages or destroys much of the evidence. That is what we do.
We are especially sad that four lives were lost in this crash and wish the families of Henry Punt, Jacquie Ann Fig, Steve Sanz and Kenneth Malinowski our fervent wishes for peace in the face of this tragic loss.
Arthur Alan Wolk
July 21, 2021