NTSB Identification: CHI06LA139.
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Accident occurred Thursday, May 25, 2006 in Hale, MI
Probable Cause Approval Date: 04/25/2007
Aircraft: Piper PA-28R-200, registration: N3310P
Injuries: 4 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 airplane sustained substantial damage when the left wing hit a tree and subsequently impacted the terrain after takeoff from runway 08 (2,400 feet long by 90 feet wide, grass). The pilot reported that he used the entire length of the runway to "build up takeoff speed." He reported the airplane lifted off the ground with about 800 feet of runway remaining. He reported, "Cross wind pushed aircraft left into tree line. Could not climb over tree at end of runway." The left wing clipped the tree about 40 feet above the ground, and the airplane landed in a field straight ahead. The landing gear hit a fence while landing. The pilot reported, "Cross wind had greater effect than anticipated based on the windsock. Blown into the path of the tree line. Possible gusting of wind." The pilot indicated there was no mechanical malfunction or failure. The pilot reported that the windsock indicated winds from 110 degrees at 7 - 10 knots. The inspection of the accident site revealed that the large oak tree that was struck was 55 feet in height and located about 330 feet from the runway and 75 feet left of center of runway 08. (The location of the tree is identified on the website for the airport, and is depicted in the state's airport directory) The inspection of the engine revealed no deficiencies that would have precluded normal engine operation. The airplane had about a 964-pound useful load limit. The combined weight of the pilot and three passengers was about 800 pounds. The fuel weighed about 160 pounds.
The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be: The pilot's inadequate compensation for the crosswind condition and failure to maintain clearance from the tree. Factors were the crosswind and the tree. Full narrative available
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