NTSB Identification: FTW96LA154.
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Accident occurred Sunday, March 24, 1996 in SLIDELL, LA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 09/09/1996
Aircraft: Piper PA-38-112, registration: N9385T
Injuries: 1 Uninjured.

NTSB investigators may not have traveled in support of this investigation and used data provided by various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

During an approach to runway 18, the aircraft was overtaking a landing aircraft. The pilot performed a series of low altitude (100 to 150 feet) S-turns to increase the distance between his aircraft and the aircraft in front of him. According to witnesses, these S-turns were at a 'very high angle of bank.' The pilot reported that when the aircraft was at tree level and at an airspeed of 80 knots, 'wind shear' was encountered. The wind 'shoved the aircraft to the left and to the ground.' According to the FAA inspector the winds at Slidell Airport were from 120 degrees at 15 gusting to 22 knots.

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

the pilot's failure to maintain aircraft control during the approach, and his failure to execute a go-around. A factor was the gusting wind.

Full narrative available

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