NTSB Identification: MKC89FA201.
The docket is stored on NTSB microfiche number 40606.
Accident occurred Friday, September 29, 1989 in ST. CHARLES, MN
Probable Cause Approval Date: 09/30/1991
Aircraft: PIPER PA-22-150, registration: N7844D
Injuries: 2 Fatal,2 Serious.

NTSB investigators either traveled in support of this investigation or conducted a significant amount of investigative work without any travel, and used data obtained from various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

TAKEOFF WAS AT NIGHT WITH A VEHICLE POSITIONED AT THE DEPARTURE END OF THE RUNWAY AND ITS HEADLIGHTS SHINING TOWARD THE AIRCRAFT DURING THE TAKEOFF ROLL. THE AIRPLANE APPEARED TO TAKE AN ABNORMALLY LONG TAKEOFF ROLL. THE AIRPLANE WAS THEN OBSERVED TURNING AND SETTLING INTO TREES. IT IS ESTIMATED THAT THE AIRPLANE'S FOWARD C.G. LIMIT WAS EXCEEDED BASED ON THE PILOT'S AND FRONT SEAT PAX'S WEIGHT. THE PILOT HAD NO USEFUL VISION IN ONE EYE. THE PILOT HAD PREVIOUSLY FLOWN THE AIRPLANE ON ONE MAG ON MORE THAN ONE OCCASION. THE MAG SWITCH WAS FOUND IN THE RIGHT MAG POSITION.

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

THE PILOT'S FAILURE TO MAINTAIN A POSITIVE RATE OF CLIMB DURING A NIGHT TAKEOFF. CONTRIBUTING FACTOR(S) WAS: AN OUT-OF-C.G AIRPLANE, TAKEOFF WITH ONLY ONE MAGNETO OPERATING; AND THE LIMITED VISION OF THE PILOT.

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