NTSB Identification: LAX05CA181.
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Accident occurred Saturday, May 14, 2005 in Tucson, AZ
Probable Cause Approval Date: 09/13/2005
Aircraft: Piper PA-28R-200, registration: N55069
Injuries: 2 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.

During the instructional flight in which landings were practiced, one or more touchdowns was firm, and the left wing sustained structural damage. The flight instructor stated that he had performed a total of 15-16 landings in the plane that day with two different students. The purpose of the second flight was to practice short field and 180-degree power off landings for the student's commercial practical exam. The 10th landing of that flight was a 180-degree power off landing that the CFI was demonstrating. He made a touch-and-go following a landing on the 1000-foot markers, and raised the landing gear after obtaining a positive rate of climb. After the gear were raised, the landing gear transition light was still illuminated. He cycled the gear a few more times without solving the problem. They made a full stop and both pilots visually inspected the gear. They could not find anything wrong with the switches and deferred the problem to maintenance. Maintenance personnel examined the gear system and found wing ribs buckled near the left main gear. This prevented the up-limit switch from closing, which prevented the light from functioning normally. They stated that either a hard landing or a landing with excessive side loading could have caused the damage.

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

the improper flare by an undetermined crewmember, which resulted in a hard landing.

Full narrative available

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