NTSB Identification: MIA01LA057.
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Accident occurred Sunday, January 07, 2001 in Jacksonville, FL
Probable Cause Approval Date: 10/17/2001
Aircraft: Mooney M-20C, registration: N6807N
Injuries: 2 Uninjured.

NTSB investigators may have traveled in support of this investigation and used data provided by various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

According to the pilot, following power application after his first touch and go landing, the aircraft assumed an extremely nose high attitude, and he realized he had no pitch control, limited rudder control, and full aileron control. He was able to control pitch attitude with throttle setting, and conducted an emergency landing in a field adjacent to the airport, sustaining substantial damage. Postcrash examination revealed a disconnect in the pitch controls at the aft pitch control rod-end-to-bellcrank connection in the tailcone. Examination of the components revealed that the pitch control rod-end eye was missed when the connecting bolt was pushed through the bellcrank side plate holes. When the nut was fitted to the bolt and tightened, the result was a connection that was only a "squeezed", friction fit. About 12 flight hours before the accident, on October 24, 2000, the aircraft underwent a 100-hour inspection, at which time the following was entered in the logbook, "Checked all control push rods and rod end bearings. Lubricated Flight Controls". On April 24, 1980, Mooney Aircraft Corporation recognized a potential for a misconnection between the rod end and the bellcrank and promulgated Service Instruction M20-44, which had not been accomplished on this aircraft.

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

The failure of maintenance personnel to properly reconnect the aircraft's elevator control system, resulting in an in-flight disconnection of the elevator control and jamming of the rudder control during climb, the subsequent in-flight loss of control, and terrain collision following an emergency descent and landing.

Full narrative available

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