NTSB Identification: SEA96LA142.
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Accident occurred Friday, July 05, 1996 in NEWPORT, OR
Probable Cause Approval Date: 04/03/1997
Aircraft: Maule MX-7-180, registration: N5663U
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.

Just as the pilot began the landing flare, the passenger attempted to adjust his position in his seat. While trying to adjust his position, the passenger inadvertently depressed the rudder pedal and held it in that position. As the aircraft responded to the rudder deflection, the pilot attempted a go-around, but was unable to maintain control with the rudder remaining in the deflected position. The aircraft crashed into trees before the go-around was completed.

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

the passenger's inadvertent activation of the aircraft's rudder, which resulted in a loss of directional control and collision with a tree during an attempted go-around (aborted landing).

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