NTSB Identification: CHI89LA127.
The docket is stored on NTSB microfiche number 39217.
Accident occurred Monday, July 03, 1989 in GLADWIN, MI
Probable Cause Approval Date: 07/11/1990
Aircraft: PIPER PA-20, registration: N7093K
Injuries: 1 Minor,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.

DURING THE LANDING ROLLOUT AFTER A 'NORMAL' LANDING, THE AIRCRAFT BEGAN A GRADUAL TURN TO THE LEFT, WHICH CONTINUED UNTIL THE AIRCRAFT DEPARTED THE LEFT SIDE OF THE RUNWAY, WHERE IT COLLIDED WITH A DITCH AND NOSED OVER ONTO IT'S BACK. EXAMINATION OF THE AIRCRAFT REVEALED THAT THE TAIL WHEEL WAS 'BENT...(TIPPED) TO THE LEFT AND CASTER TOWARDS THE RIGHT. THE...ANGLE OF THE TAIL WHEEL WAS DETERMINED TO BE...THE SAME ANGLE AS THE GROUND TRACK OF THE LANDING ROLLOUT.' A WORN AREA WAS NOTED IN THE TAIL GEAR CASTING WHICH APPEARED TO CORRESPOND TO THE ANGLE OF THE TAIL WHEEL. THE MOST RECENT ANNUAL INSPECTION OCCURRED ON JUNE 28, 1989; NO TAIL WHEEL ABNORMALITIES WERE NOTED AT ANNUAL. THE PILOT IN THE LEFT SEAT FAILED TO USE BRAKES PROPERLY TO CORRECT THE LEFT TURN. THE FLIGHT INSTRUCTOR IN THE RIGHT SEAT DID NOT HAVE ACCESS TO BRAKES.

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

FAILURE OF THE PILOT SEATED IN THE LEFT SEAT OF THE AIRPLANE TO USE BRAKES TO CORRECT FOR A LEFT TURN CAUSED BY A BENT TAIL WHEEL.

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