Socata TBM 700B, Mobile, Ala., April 24, 2003–On approach to Mobile Downtown Airport, the pilot of TBM N705QD said he had a “runawayengine.” The ground controller cleared the airplane to land on Runway 18. The pilot, who had 408 hours in the TBM, shut down the engine and continued the approach, but said he did not think that he was going to “make it.” The airplane hit a utility pole at 35 feet above the ground and burst into flames short of the runway.
The fuel control unit arm to the fuel control unit interconnect rod end connection was found to be separated from the rod end swivel ball assembly. The swivel ball assembly was found to be attached improperly to the inboard side of the arm, and the washer and nut to be attached to the arm’s outboard side instead of the inboard side. The rod separation would have resulted in a loss of power-lever control.
The published emergency procedures called for reducing airspeed until the landing was assured, not immediately shutting down the engine, as the pilot did.
The NTSB blamed the accident on the improper installation of the power control linkage on the engine fuel control unit by maintenance personnel, which resulted in a loss of power-lever control, and the pilot’s failure to follow emergency procedures and his intentional engine shutdown.
The airplane hit the street inverted and came to rest engulfed in flames. The pilot was killed and the airplane sustained substantial damage. The TBM, operated by Quest Diagnostics, had a undergone a C Check on April 9, 2003.