NTSB Identification: MIA06LA015.
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Accident occurred Sunday, November 06, 2005 in Opa-Locka, FL
Probable Cause Approval Date: 11/29/2006
Aircraft: Piper PA-28R-180, registration: N4652J
Injuries: 3 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.

During climbout after takeoff while flying at an airspeed greater than 80 mph, the certified flight instructor (CFI) and pilot rated student reported that the landing gear would not retract. The CFI checked the cockpit trying to troubleshoot the problem and after looking outside, realized the airplane was very low. The airplane impacted grass on the north side of the runway causing the left main landing gear to separate and the nose and right main landing gears to collapse. The airplane came to rest upright and a small postcrash fire damaged the rear portion of the engine. Examination of the airplane following recovery revealed the landing gear selector handle was in the up position, and only the landing light circuit breaker was tripped/popped. Testing of the diaphragm of the landing gear auto extend system revealed no evidence of preimpact failure or malfunction. When electrical power was applied to the airplane and the landing gear selector handle was placed in the down position, components of the landing gears moved towards the down position. The airplane "Owner's Handbook" indicates the pressure sensing device in the landing gear system prevents "...the gear from retracting at airspeeds below approximately 85 mph with full power, though the selector switch may be in the up position. This speed increases with reduced power and/or increased altitude." The handbook also indicates, "Manual override of the device is provided by an emergency gear lever located between the front seats to the left of the flap handle. The emergency gear lever, when held in the raised position, can be used to override the system, and gear position is controlled by the selector switch regardless of airspeed/power combinations."

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

The failure of the pilot-in-command/CFI to maintain control of the airplane and his inattentiveness to the altitude while troubleshooting the landing gear system resulting in the in-flight collision with terrain.

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