NTSB Identification: ERA09LA358
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Saturday, June 20, 2009 in Plymouth, MA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 08/12/2010
Aircraft: PIPER PA-28-161, registration: N29496
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.

After performing several takeoffs and landings on runway 24, the certified flight instructor (CFI) elected to use the grass area parallel to runway 33 in order to demonstrate soft-field takeoffs to the student pilot. Once airborne the CFI lowered the nose of the airplane in order to accelerate to their predetermined climbout speed of 79 knots indicated airspeed (KIAS). According to the CFI, the airplane accelerated fairly normally to 55 KIAS, then slowly accelerated to 60 KIAS, at which point the airspeed "stagnated." The CFI made the decision to discontinue the takeoff and land on the remaining portion of the grass area. She allowed the airplane to "float over" the paved portion of a perpendicular runway and touched down on the main landing gear on the other side of the paved portion. The airplane made contact with a low berm and the nosegear collapsed. The grass area that was used for this flight was not a runway and was approximately 1,000 feet in length. The pilot operating handbook for this airplane make and model does not prohibit the departure from a non-paved surface area; however, the only performance data that was provided by the manufacturer requires a "paved, level, dry runway."

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

The CFI's inadequate preflight planning and delay to abort the takeoff from the soft takeoff area.

Full narrative available

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