NTSB Identification: NYC95FA212.
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Accident occurred Sunday, September 03, 1995 in EGG HARBOR, NJ
Probable Cause Approval Date: 05/09/1996
Aircraft: PIPER PA-18A-150, registration: N9374D
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 airplane approached the field, for the first banner pick up of the day, with no indications of difficulty. The pilot made contact with the pick-up loop, entered a climb, followed by a push over at approximately 200 feet AGL. The airplane lost some altitude and regained forward speed. The pilot released the banner, and the airplane began to pitch upward, followed by a continually increasing bank/roll to the right. The airplane rolled to a full 90 degrees, until it impacted with a tree. A witness stated, 'the aircraft's engine noise sounded normal...I then heard him pull the power...very shortly after I heard the sound of impact....' At the time of the accident, the pilot had approximately 500 hours total flight time, and 60 hours in this make and model airplane. The pilot was employed by the operator about two months earlier and he had approximately 40 hours flight time in banner towing operations. The pilot next to pick up a banner stated that the winds were 'light' out of the north and there was 'no turbulence.'

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

Failure of the pilot to maintain adequate airspeed during pull-up from a banner pickup, which resulted in a stall and collision with trees before recovering from the stall.

Full narrative available

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