NTSB Identification: DEN89LA058.
The docket is stored on NTSB microfiche number 38473.
Accident occurred Friday, January 06, 1989 in CRAIG, CO
Probable Cause Approval Date: 03/25/1991
Aircraft: PIPER PA-31T, registration: N82290
Injuries: 6 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 PLT REQUESTED THE SNOW COVERED RWY BE REPLOWED BEFORE HE TOOK OFF. HE RPRTD THAT AFTERWARD, HE SAW NO SNOW RIDGES OR EVIDENCE OF UNEVEN PLOWING & CONCLUDED THE 'RUNWAY DEMARCATION WAS ADEQUATE FOR TAKEOFF.' HE SAID THAT DRG TAKEOFF, AT ABOUT 80 KTS, HE FELT THE LEFT GEAR DRAG AND THE AIRPLANE BEGAN TO SWERVE LEFT. HE CORRECTED WITH RUDDER & THE AIRPLANE SWERVED TO THE RIGHT EDGE OF THE RWY. SUBSEQUENTLY, THE PLT LOST CONTROL OF THE AIRPLANE & IT CONTINUED INTO A SNOWBANK & WAS DAMAGED. RPRTDLY, THE ACFT SWERVED AFTER ENCOUNTERING A 'SNOWRIDGE' LEFT BY THE SNOWPLOW. NO PRE-ACDNT PART FAILURE OR MALFUNCTION WAS RPRTD.

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

UNSUITABLE TERRAIN (RUNWAY CONDITION) SELECTED BY THE PILOT. FACTORS RELATED TO THE ACCIDENT WERE: THE ADVERSE WEATHER CONDITIONS, INADEQUATE REMOVAL OF SNOW FROM THE RUNWAY BY AIRPORT PERSONNEL, UNEVEN SNOW COVERED RUNWAY, LACK OF VISUAL PERCEPTION BY THE PILOT, AND SNOWBANKS BESIDE THE RUNWAY.

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