NTSB Identification: SEA08CA026.
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Accident occurred Monday, November 12, 2007 in Sedona, AZ
Probable Cause Approval Date: 12/20/2007
Aircraft: Piper PA-28-180, registration: N3656R
Injuries: 4 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.

The private pilot reported that after reaching rotation speed of 60 miles per hour the nose lifted off the runway, "...but the plane felt sluggish and heavy, so I gently eased the nose back down and decided to let the aircraft pick up more airspeed." The pilot stated that after a few seconds the airspeed began to increase again, "...so I released back pressure again, and I felt the aircraft begin to climb." The pilot revealed that at this point [the airplane] was "hit" by a sudden gust of wind causing it to be blown to the left of the runway. The airplane subsequently impacted a taxiway sign before impacting the ground and coming to rest upright about 100 to 200 feet off the left side of runway 03. The pilot reported the wind at the time of the accident was from 150 degrees at 4 knots.

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

The pilot's inadequate compensation for the wind condition, which resulted in his failure to maintain directional control during takeoff. Factors associated with the accident included the gusty crosswind condition and the taxiway sign.

Full narrative available

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