NTSB Identification: SEA00LA049.
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Accident occurred Friday, March 10, 2000 in PORT TOWNSEND, WA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 12/04/2000
Aircraft: Cessna 180, registration: N4994A
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, who was flying a tailwheel-equipped aircraft, thought he was landing into a quartering headwind. But according to pilot-rated witnesses, the wind shifted just prior to the aircraft crossing the threshold. After the aircraft touched down, the tailwind lifted its tail into the air, and the pilot began having difficulty maintaining directional control. During his attempts to remain aligned with the runway, the aircraft departed the side runway surface, and encountered soft, wet terrain. Soon after encountering the soft terrain, one of the main gear legs separated from the aircraft.

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

The pilot's failure to adequately compensate for changing wind conditions during the landing roll in a tailwheel-equipped aircraft. Factors include a variable, shifting wind that changed from a quartering headwind to a quartering tailwind just prior to the aircraft touching down on the runway, and soft, wet terrain just off the edge of the runway surface.

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