NTSB Identification: CHI03LA077.
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Accident occurred Sunday, February 16, 2003 in Cahokia, IL
Probable Cause Approval Date: 12/30/2003
Aircraft: Swearingen SA-26AT, registration: N30TF
Injuries: 1 Uninjured.

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 nose gear separated from the airplane following a loss of directional control while landing. The pilot reported the automatic terminal information service (ATIS) was reporting the wind as being from 010 degrees at 14 knots, gusting to 21 knots. He reported that prior to landing, he was informed by the tower that the braking action was fair. The pilot reported that during the landing roll, at a speed of about 30 miles per hour, the airplane began drifting to the left. He stated that he attempted to correct the drift using nose wheel steering, right rudder, and right brake, to no avail. He reported the thick ice and snow on the left side of the runway pulled the airplane further to the left. The airplane departed the left side of the runway where it came to rest on its nose. The nose gear had separated from the airplane and according to the pilot, it was located approximately 20 feet behind the airplane. Friction testing on runway 30L performed approximately 46 minutes prior to the accident produced readings of 34%g, 36%g, and 33%g, on various sections of the runway. These readings equate to a medium braking action.

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

The pilot failed to maintain directional control of the airplane during landing. Factors associated with the accident were the snow covered runway, the crosswind, and the overload failure of the nose gear.

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