NTSB Identification: ATL82DA130
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Thursday, May 13, 1982 in MITCHELLVILLE, MD
Probable Cause Approval Date: 05/13/1983
Aircraft: PIPER PA-28-161, registration: N3563W
Injuries: 1 Minor.

THE PILOT TOOK OFF ON A DARK NIGHT TO AN AIRPORT THAT HE HAD NEVER LANDED AT BEFORE. WHILE EN ROUTE, HE BECAME DISORIENTED AND CALLED A FLIGHT SERVICE STATION FOR HELP. A MILITARY HELICOPTER PILOT RENDEZVOUSED WITH THE LOST PILOT AND PROVIDED VECTORS TO THE DESTINATION. POWER LINES WERE LOCATED NORTH OF THE AIRPORT. MOST OF THE PILOTS THAT WERE FAMILIAR WITH THE AIRPORT PLANNED THEIR APPROACHES TO GO INSIDE THE POWER LINES. HOWEVER, THE PILOT OF N3563W APPROACHED OVER THE LINES WHICH NECESSITATED A HIGH PATTERN. ALSO, THE PILOT STATED THAT AFTER HIS EN ROUTE EXPERIENCE, HE FORGOT TO LOWER HIS FLAPS. WHILE LANDING, HE FLOATED AND TOUCHED DOWN ABOUT 500 TO 700 FT FROM THE DEPARTURE END. WITNESSES HEARD THE BRAKES SQUEALING AS THE PILOT CONTINUED OFF THE RUNWAY. AFTER DEPARTING THE RUNWAY, THE AIRCRAFT CONTINUED DOWN A GRADE AND INTO A GULLY AND WAS SUBSTANTIALLY DAMAGED. AN EXAMINATION OF THE AIRCRAFT REVEALED NO MECHANICAL PROBLEMS.

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

DISTANCE..MISJUDGED..PILOT IN COMMAND

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

AIRSPEED..MISJUDGED..PILOT IN COMMAND

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

GO-AROUND..NOT PERFORMED..PILOT IN COMMAND


Contributing Factors

LIGHT CONDITION..DARK NIGHT


Contributing Factors

BECAME LOST/DISORIENTED..INADVERTENT..PILOT IN COMMAND


Contributing Factors

LACK OF FAMILIARITY WITH GEOGRAPHIC AREA..PILOT IN COMMAND


Contributing Factors

LOWERING OF FLAPS..NOT PERFORMED..PILOT IN COMMAND


Contributing Factors

OTHER PSYCHOLOGICAL CONDITION..PILOT IN COMMAND


Contributing Factors

TERRAIN CONDITION..HIGH OBSTRUCTION(S)


Contributing Factors

TERRAIN CONDITION..DITCH

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