NTSB Identification: SEA97LA138.
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Accident occurred Friday, June 13, 1997 in WALDPORT, OR
Probable Cause Approval Date: 05/29/1998
Aircraft: Piper PA-28-140, registration: N1438T
Injuries: 2 Serious.

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 landed at an airstrip that was designated as a 'Warning Airport' by the Oregon State Aeronautics Division. The remarks section of the Oregon Airport Directory stated '...landing to south and takeoff to north not recommended.' Also, there were signs at the airport that warn against taking off to the north. After landing, the pilot taxied back to the south end and initiated a takeoff to the north. The wind was reported to be variable and gusting to 20 kts. Reportedly, after liftoff, the aircraft entered an area of shifting/unfavorable winds and was unable to climb fast enough to clear the tall trees off the north end of the runway. Near the departure end of the runway, the pilot turned about 20 degrees to the left to fly over an area where the trees were not as tall as the ones directly off the end of the runway. About 200 ft past the departure end of the runway, the aircraft impacted a power line running to a local residence. In a postaccident interview, the pilot stated that he had not stopped to make pre-takeoff performance calculations or to evaluate the wind conditions from outside the aircraft before attempting the takeoff.

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

the pilot's inadequate preflight planning/preparation to ensure he could execute a safe departure in the meteorological conditions present at the time. Related factors included: the unfavorable/variable/gusty wind conditions; and a power line near the departure end of the runway.

Full narrative available

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