NTSB Identification: LAX06LA017.
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Accident occurred Monday, October 17, 2005 in Mojave, CA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 07/25/2007
Aircraft: North American T-39A, registration: N39FS
Injuries: 2 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.
Prior to departure, the pilot and copilot calculated takeoff and landing distances for a wet runway. The T39A departed for a test flight, but returned after a short time due to rain showers in the area. The landing runway was still wet from a previous rain shower. The crew selected an approach flap setting and crossed the runway threshold at 125 knots. The captain reported the touchdown was just past the runway numbers, and the crew experienced normal braking action until around the 3,000-foot remaining point. At that point, the braking "seemed ineffective." The flight crew selected antiskid off and normal braking was attempted with limited effect. The captain elected not to abort the landing due to the limited remaining runway and the time needed to spool up the engines. The copilot was calling out speeds and distance remaining, and the captain remembered the airspeed was 60 knots with 2,000 feet of runway remaining. The copilot called "nose wheel steering" a couple seconds later but the steering had little effect on the aircraft. He reported that the braking "became nil" as the aircraft slowed to about 30 knots. The airplane drifted to the right side of the runway and departed the runway surface. The landing gear dug into the soft ground, with the nose gear collapsing aft and the right main gear folding inward. No mechanical failures or malfunctions were found during post accident aircraft inspections.
The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be: The pilot's failure to maintain aircraft control during the landing roll. A wet runway surface was a factor. Full narrative available
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