NTSB Identification: ATL96LA083.
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Accident occurred Wednesday, May 01, 1996 in COCHRAN, GA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 10/04/1996
Aircraft: Piper PA-22-135, registration: N1209C
Injuries: 2 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.

The certified flight instructor (CFI) stated the airplane hit a bump on the takeoff roll, and became airborne prematurely. The airplane veered to the right at a very slow airspeed. At that point, the CFI elected to continue the takeoff, rather than land. He lowered the nose to gain airspeed; however, he was unable to attain sufficient airspeed and altitude to clear trees that were ahead. The airplane collided with the trees, then impacted the terrain.

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

failure of the flight instructor (CFI) to maintain directional control of the airplane during takeoff, when the airplane encountered an uneven area on the airstrip and becoming airborne prematurely; and his failure to maintain clearance (or altitude) from trees, which were adjacent to the airstrip. The uneven surface of the airstrip and proximity of trees were related factors.

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