NTSB Identification: FTW98LA079.
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Accident occurred Saturday, December 27, 1997 in ENGLEWOOD, CO
Probable Cause Approval Date: 05/04/1998
Aircraft: Beech 35-B33, registration: N5743K
Injuries: 2 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 prevailing wind favored landing on runway 28, but it was closed due to a previous incident and the airplane was blocking the runway. The pilot accepted runway 35R for landing. The wind was from 290 degrees at 20 knots, with gusts to 28 knots. As the pilot aligned the airplane with the runway, he noticed 'snow fingers' across the runway so he planned his touchdown between the centerline and the right side of the runway. The airplane touched down and the crosswind caused the airplane to drift right. The airplane was substantially damaged when it struck a snow berm on the right side of the runway. According to the Beech Aircraft Corporation, the maximum demonstrated crosswind component for the Beech 35-B33 is 17 knots. This would produce a crosswind component of about 17 knots and a headwind component about 10 knots. Gusts of 28 knots would produce a crosswind component of about 24 knots and a headwind component of 14 knots.

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

The pilot's improper decision to land in wind conditions that exceeded the airplane's crosswind component, and his failure to divert to an alternate airport with runways more nearly aligned with the wind. Factors were the icy runway and crosswind.

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