NTSB Identification: WPR09CA106
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Sunday, February 01, 2009 in Payson, AZ
Probable Cause Approval Date: 05/12/2009
Aircraft: GRUMMAN AA-5, registration: N5423L
Injuries: 2 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 AWOS reported winds were from 101 degrees at 11 knots, but another airplane was landing on runway 24, so the pilot announced that he would follow that airplane for landing. His approach was high and fast and he applied full flaps early and reduced the engine power to idle. The pilot reported encountering gusty wind conditions during the approach, but felt that he had the landing under control. The airplane was nearing touchdown, about midfield, when it suddenly descended and landed hard on the runway and bounced back into the air. The pilot said that the airspeed was about 60 miles per hour (mph), with no stall warning horn heard. The airplane was aligned with the runway centerline, and he felt that the airplane was under control, so he applied a small amount of power to cushion the touchdown. The airplane touched down and then bounced back into the air again. The pilot said that the bounce was smaller and it appeared that the airplane was slower as well. The airplane finally settled onto the runway; however, the right main landing gear touched down with more force and the airplane veered to the left of the runway and into a drainage swale. He was worried that the airplane would run into buildings or other aircraft, and since the airspeed was at 55 mph, he decided to get the airplane back into the air. He proceeded with the go-around, and once the airplane accelerated to 80 mph, he retracted the flaps. At this point, the right wing struck the windsock pole and the airplane began to sink back to the gound. He placed the airplane in a nose high attitude in hopes of clearing the airport perimeter fence; however, the airplane struck the fence and cartwheeled before coming to rest upright.

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

The pilot's inadequate recovery from a bounced landing and failure to maintain directional control. Contributing to the accident was the crosswind condition.

Full narrative available

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