NTSB Identification: NYC08LA007.
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Accident occurred Sunday, October 07, 2007 in Bealeton, VA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 05/13/2008
Aircraft: Boeing A75N, registration: N66004
Injuries: 2 Minor.
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 pilot of the 1941 Boeing A75N (Stearman) reported that the airplane powered up as expected, "accelerated normally, [and] perhaps [took] a little longer than usual on the takeoff roll." The airplane lifted off the grass strip but would not climb before it struck trees and wires and was destroyed by a postcrash fire. The pilot said that there were no deficiencies in the airplane's performance and handling. When asked what may have caused the accident, the pilot stated that he didn't know but that the high density-altitude, the airplane's high gross weight, and a tailwind "didn't help." Although the performance charts provided by the airplane's owner were for an airplane with a lower gross weight and contained no tailwind adjustment data, the pilot reported that he had never seen the charts and that he did not conduct any performance planning before the takeoff.
The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be: The pilot's failure to conduct performance planning before takeoff.
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