NTSB Identification: ATL05CA062.
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Accident occurred Saturday, March 12, 2005 in Redstone Arsnl, AL
Probable Cause Approval Date: 06/08/2005
Aircraft: Cessna 172P, registration: N5456K
Injuries: 1 Minor.

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 stated he departed and immediately encountered "very turbulent wind" and decided to return for landing. The pilot stated the airplane was very difficult to control in all three axes. The pilot stated that, while on final approach just over runway 17, he observed the airspeed around 60 knots and the stall warning was flickering. The pilot stated he added power and reduced flaps for a go-around. He stated the airplane stalled, and he continued to pull back on the yoke. The airplane collided with the runway and caught fire. Two witnesses on the ramp observed the airplane on final approach and reported it appeared to have approximately 30 degrees of crab into the wind. One witness reported the airplane's nose pitched up, dropped suddenly, then about 30 feet above the ground, the airplane's nosed pitched up again, followed by an abrupt drop to the runway. The pilot reported no mechanical malfunction with the airplane. A review of recorded weather data from Huntsville International Airport, Huntsville, Alabama, located 4.6 nautical miles west of the accident site, revealed at 0753 winds were reported from 230 degrees at 12 knots.

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

The pilot's failure to maintain adequate airspeed during approach, which resulted in an inadvertent stall and subsequent collision with the runway. Factors were the turbulence and crosswind conditions.

Full narrative available

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