NTSB Identification: NYC97LA039.
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Accident occurred Saturday, December 28, 1996 in CATAWBA VALLEY, VA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 08/29/1997
Aircraft: Cessna 150D, registration: N4523U
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.
The pilot departed a non-towered airport on a 700 mile cross-country flight. The first planned refueling stop was 185 miles south of the departure airport. About 30 minutes from the refuel stop, the pilot determined that the airport was IFR, and flew west to locate another airport. After about 25 minutes, he performed a precautionary landing to an 1,800 foot farm field, and the airplane struck wires on final approach, which resulted in minor damage. The pilot purchased auto fuel from the property owner and received directions to a local airport. He then attempted a down hill, downwind takeoff, in heavy grass. The airplane became airborne, the stall horn beeped, and then the airplane struck the ground. There was no record of the pilot receiving a weather briefing. The departure airport, the refuel stop, and the intended alternate were non-towered airports. The pilot by-passed two VFR airports with operating control towers during his search for an alternate airport.
The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be: the pilot's improper planning/decision, and his failure to attain adequate airspeed, which resulted in a stall after takeoff and collision with ground. Factors relating to the accident were: the pilot's use of inadequate terrain for takeoff, high vegetation in the takeoff area, and the prevailing tailwind for takeoff. Full narrative available
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