NTSB Identification: ERA09CA475
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Sunday, August 23, 2009 in Tuskegee, AL
Probable Cause Approval Date: 03/03/2010
Aircraft: PIPER PA-22, registration: N1415A
Injuries: 1 Serious.

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.

At the completion of a cross country flight, the pilot entered the traffic pattern for a landing on runway 31. The pilot was advised via the airport Unicom frequency that the winds were unpredictable, and observed that “the windsock indicated little if any wind.” After the flare for landing on the 5,003-foot-long by 100-foot-wide asphalt runway, the tail-wheel-equipped airplane "weathervaned" to the right. The pilot then decided to abort the landing; however the airplane departed the right side of the runway and impacted a berm, resulting in serious injury to the pilot and substantial damage to the airplane. Winds recorded 16 nautical miles northeast of the airport were aligned with the runway heading at 9 knots, gusting to 14 knots. Another airport located 31 nautical miles northwest recorded winds at 330 degrees at 9 knots gusting to 19 knots. Examination of the airplane by a Federal Aviation Administration inspector did not reveal any evidence of any preimpact mechanical malfunctions. The inspector found skid marks from both tires on the runway surface and he noted that the airplane sustained damage to the engine firewall, fuselage, and wings.

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

The pilot’s failure to maintain directional control during the aborted landing.

Full narrative available

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