NTSB Identification: CHI97LA261.
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Accident occurred Saturday, August 16, 1997 in HINCKLEY, IL
Probable Cause Approval Date: 01/07/1998
Aircraft: Piper PA-25-235, registration: N9781P
Injuries: 1 Minor.

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 of the tow plane reported that after takeoff at an altitude of about 50 ft agl, he felt a 'large pull' on the tail of his airplane. He looked back and saw the glider was 'very high and off to my left side.' He then felt slack in the line at which time he thought the glider was moving back into position. At an altitude of 100' to 150' a 'violent jerk' occurred and the tow plane was forced into a nose down attitude. The tow rope was released but the airplane continued in the nose down attitude until it contacted the terrain.

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

the failure of the glider pilot to properly handle his airplane during the initial takeoff climb which resulted in the tow pilot's inability to maintain control of his airplane.

Full narrative available

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