NTSB Identification: NYC08LA253
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Tuesday, July 22, 2008 in Starkville, MS
Probable Cause Approval Date: 12/29/2009
Aircraft: CARRITHERS CARL L VP1, registration: N822CB
Injuries: 1 Serious.

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 was conducting his third takeoff from the runway, in which he intended to complete a 180-degree return to the airport. When the airplane was at an altitude of about 300 feet above ground level (75 feet above the trees), the pilot initiated a 25-degree left bank turn back toward the runway. During the turn, the airplane impacted trees and was substantially damaged. Examination of the airplane revealed no mechanical deficiencies. The pilot’s blood alcohol level was 0.13 g/dL one hour after the accident. He had a history of DUIs and inpatient alcohol-related treatment, and a history of anxiety treated with prescription medication (paroxetine and alprazolam); however, he denied any medical or alcohol-related history on his applications for FAA airman medical certificates. The pilot would have been impaired by the effects of alcohol while flying the aircraft, and he may also have been impaired by use of alprazolam. According to 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91.17, "No person may act ... as a crewmember of a civil aircraft ... while under the influence of alcohol…or while having an alcohol concentration of 0.04 or greater in a blood or breath specimen."

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

The pilot's failure to maintain clearance from trees during takeoff. Contributing to the accident was the pilot's impairment by alcohol.

Full narrative available

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