NTSB Identification: BFO95FA050.
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Accident occurred Friday, May 12, 1995 in TAPPAHANOCK, VA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 05/09/1996
Aircraft: CESSNA 172F, registration: N5238F
Injuries: 1 Fatal.

NTSB investigators either traveled in support of this investigation or conducted a significant amount of investigative work without any travel, and used data obtained from various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

THE STUDENT PILOT WAS ON A SOLO CROSS-COUNTRY FLIGHT. ON THE FIRST LEG OF THE FLIGHT FROM ANDREWS AFB, MD, TO FARMVILLE, VA, SHE BECAME LOST AND LANDED AT CREWE AIRPORT, ABOUT 20 MILES FROM FARMVILLE. AFTER DETERMINING HER LOCATION, SHE CALLED HER FLIGHT INSTRUCTOR (CFI), AND THEY AGREED FOR HER TO CONTINUE THE FLIGHT. ON THE LAST LEG OF THE FLIGHT, FROM PORTSMOUTH, VA, BACK TO ANDREWS AFB, THE STUDENT BECAME LOST AGAIN. SHE CONTACTED RICHMOND ATCT AND REQUESTED FLIGHT FOLLOWING BACK TO ANDREWS AFB. SHE WAS ASKED TO SQUAWK A TRANSPONDER CODE; HOWEVER, SHE DID NOT RESPOND, AND RADIO COMMUNICATION WITH THE STUDENT WAS LOST. SHE ELECTED TO LAND AT A NEARBY AIRPORT. DURING THE LANDING, THE AIRPLANE TOUCHED DOWN AT THE DEPARTURE END OF THE RUNWAY. IT CONTINUED BEYOND THE END OF THE RUNWAY AND COLLIDED WITH A FENCE AND FENCE POST. THERE HAD BEEN SEVERAL BREAKS IN THE STUDENT'S FLIGHT TRAINING, DUE TO HER WORK SCHEDULE AND AN EXTENDED TDY. ACCORDING TO HER LOG BOOK, HER INSTRUCTOR HAD SIGNED HER OFF FOR A CROSS-COUNTRY FLIGHT ON 3/18/95, 25 DAYS BEFORE THE ACCIDENT. DURING THAT 25 DAYS, THE STUDENT FLEW 0.9 HOURS SOLO ON 3/18/95 AND RECEIVED 1.1 HOURS OF DUAL INSTRUCTION ON 4/29/95. AFTER THAT, SHE DID NOT FLY AGAIN UNTIL SHE DEPARTED ON THE SOLO CROSS-COUNTRY FLIGHT. SHE HAD 62.8 HOURS TOTAL FLIGHT TIME, INCLUDING 21.5 HOURS OF SOLO FLIGHT TIME.

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

The student pilot's misjudgment of distance/speed during the approach to land, and her failure to go around while there was still sufficient runway remaining. Factors related to the accident were: inadequate supervision by the flight instructor, the student's lack of recent flying experience, and the student pilot becaming lost or disoriented during the solo cross-country flight.

Full narrative available

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