NTSB Identification: CHI94DER02.
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Accident occurred Thursday, July 28, 1994 in HALSTAD, MN
Probable Cause Approval Date: 03/27/1995
Aircraft: AIR TRACTOR AT-301, registration: N3611Z
Injuries: 1 Uninjured.

THE COMMERCIAL PILOT ATTEMPTED TO TAKEOFF ON A SOFT GRASS AIRSTRIP, LOADED WITH 2,720 POUNDS OF CHEMICALS FOR AERIAL APPLICATION. THE PILOT STATED THE AIRPLANE LIFTED OFF, BUT THE TAILWHEEL STRUCK AN EMBANKMENT. THE AIRPLANE PITCHED NOSE DOWN ON REBOUND FROM THE TAIL STRIKE, AND CAME TO REST UPSIDE DOWN IN A FIELD. THE AIRPLANE MANUAL RECOMMENDS A MAXIMUM GROSS WEIGHT OF 5,000 POUNDS. HOWEVER THE ACCIDENT AIRPLANE WAS CERTIFICATED IN THE RESTRICTED CATEGORY, AND WAS OPERATING AT AN ESTIMATED 7,003 POUNDS.

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be:

the commercial pilot's failure to maintain clearance from terrain during the attempted takeoff. Related factors are the soft terrain and the deterioration in aircraft performance due to the high gross weight.

Full narrative available

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