NTSB Identification: ERA09CA313
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Sunday, May 31, 2009 in Greeneville, TN
Probable Cause Approval Date: 11/09/2009
Aircraft: PENSINGER ZODIAC 601, registration: N250JP
Injuries: 1 Minor.

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 pilot stated that the departure airport has hills located to the east and north of the airport. He obtained an abbreviated computer weather briefing before the flight indicating that the surface winds were from 040 degrees at 6 knots. The surface winds at another airport located 20 nautical miles east of the departure airport were from 240 degrees at 11 knots, gusting to 14 knots. The pilot departed from runway 4 and started a right turn while flying 100 to 200 feet above ground level just past the hill located to the east. The pilot stated that the airspeed immediately decreased, the airplane became "mushy," and then made contact with a tree. The pilot stated that he encountered a wind change or wind shear swirling between the two hills. The airplane continued to lose altitude, and he made an off-field landing in an open field. The airplane hit an electrical line as he landed the airplane perpendicular to a road. The airplane collided with an embankment and burst into flames. The pilot stated there were no mechanical problems with the airplane before the accident.

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

An encounter with wind shear on initial climb after takeoff.

Full narrative available

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