NTSB Identification: SEA02LA040.
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Accident occurred Tuesday, February 12, 2002 in Scappoose, OR
Probable Cause Approval Date: 05/21/2002
Aircraft: Piper PA-24-180, registration: N7004P
Injuries: 1 Fatal,1 Minor.

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 reported that he hand propped the engine because the electric starter would not start the engine. He instructed his passenger, seated in the right seat, in the use of the "T" handle brake system, which had to be pushed in for the Johnson brake bar to work. The pilot then set the throttle between one-quarter and three-eights of an inch. Once the engine started, the pilot observed that the engine produced high power and the aircraft began to move forward. The aircraft knocked down the pilot as it accelerated across the airport. The aircraft crossed the runway and a taxiway and collided with a fence and trees in a park to the west side of the airport. The pilot reported that he did not understand how the brake could have been released. No tie-downs or wheel chocks were used.

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

The pilot's failure to tie down the aircraft prior to hand propping the engine. Factors were a fence, trees, and the pilot's inadequate preflight planning/preparation.

Full narrative available

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