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Hit and Run?


Well-known member
Jan 17, 2002
Total Time
NTSB Identification: WPR09FA234
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Saturday, May 09, 2009 in Ramona, CA
Aircraft: Upton Bakeng Duce, registration: N86YP
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 9, 2009, about 1435, an Upton Bakeng Duce, N86YP, impacted the ground about 6.4 miles east-southeast of Ramona, California. The amateur built, single engine, experimental airplane was operated by the pilot, who had borrowed the airplane from its owner. The pilot held a private pilot certificate. A second pilot was also on board, and he held a commercial pilot certificate. The airplane was destroyed during its uncontrolled descent and ground impact. There was no fire. Both pilots were killed during the personal flight. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time, and no flight plan had been filed. The Upton's flight was performed under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91, and it originated from the Ramona airport about 1423.

Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and National Transportation Safety Board personnel interviewed a total of nine persons who reported observing and/or hearing an accident. One of these witnesses reported to the Safety Board investigator that, from her vantage point on elevated terrain in a hilly area, she had observed two airplanes flying in close proximity to each other for at least several seconds prior to their colliding. None of the other witnesses (all in different locations) reported observing a second airplane in the vicinity. One of these witnesses reported observing the accident airplane for a period of time prior to the crash, but described his observations as having been intermittent.

According to the hilltop eyewitness, one of the airplanes was flying slower than the other airplane. The faster moving airplane was predominately white in color, and the slower moving airplane was predominately colored red. The witness further reported to the Safety Board investigator that she observed the airplanes maneuvering "dangerously" close to each other. The witness stated that during the time she observed these airplanes, the red airplane appeared to make relatively shallow turns as compared with the maneuvers that the white airplane performed. The witness reported that a midair collision occurred while the red airplane was flying in an easterly direction, and the unidentified airplane was climbing in a northerly direction.

The eyewitness reported that, immediately following the collision, the red airplane rolled into a 90-degree bank, a span of wing appeared to break off, and the airplane spiraled downward until impacting the ground. Following the impact, she did not recall seeing the faster airplane again.

The Upton Bakeng Duce's wreckage has been recovered from the accident site. The outboard 5-foot-long span of the airplane's right wing was located about 1/4-mile from the main wreckage. The airplane's right wing main and aft spars were found fractured in multiple locations, about mid-span. Spar fragments have been collected for follow-up examination.

The Safety Board is continuing to investigate the presence and involvement of a second (unidentified) airplane in the reported midair collision.