NTSB Identification: NYC99LA135.
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Accident occurred Saturday, May 29, 1999 in BENNINGTON, VT
Probable Cause Approval Date: 12/04/2000
Aircraft: Maule M7-235C, registration: N126MC
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.

During the takeoff roll, the airplane drifted to the left of the runway centerline, and the pilot applied right rudder. The airplane then went towards the right side of the runway, and when the pilot attempted to apply left rudder, it would not depress. As the airplane departed the right side of the runway, the pilot observed that the right front passenger's right foot was extended onto the right rudder pedal. The airplane went into a ditch, and flipped over. In the NTSB Form 6120.1/2, the pilot stated that in the future, his pre-flight preparation would include telling passengers to keep their hands and feet away from the controls. Examination of the wreckage did not reveal any pre-impact malfunctions of the engine or airframe, which included the airplane's flight controls.

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

The pilot's inadequate pre-flight briefing which resulted in control interference by the right front seat passenger.

Full narrative available

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