NTSB Identification: ANC03CA008.
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Accident occurred Tuesday, October 29, 2002 in Palmer, AK
Probable Cause Approval Date: 02/25/2003
Aircraft: Piper PA-22, registration: N878A
Injuries: 3 Uninjured.

NTSB investigators used data provided by various entities, including, but not limited to, the Federal Aviation Administration and/or the operator and did not travel in support of this investigation to prepare this aircraft accident report.

The pilot reported he was attempting to takeoff from a remote gravel bar. He noted the wind conditions as generally calm, with infrequent gusts. Shortly after liftoff, the airplane settled onto the gravel bar and collided with rocks, collapsing the main landing gear. The airplane was consumed by a postcrash fire. The pilot said there were no preimpact mechanical problems with the airplane, and that a wind shift or gust may have contributed to the accident.

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

The premature liftoff by the pilot during takeoff, which resulted in on ground encounter with terrain when the airplane settled onto rocks. A contributing factor in the accident was an unfavorable wind.

Full narrative available

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