NTSB Identification: CEN11LA090
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Thursday, December 02, 2010 in Decatur, IL
Probable Cause Approval Date: 04/20/2012
Aircraft: SOUTHERLAND FREEBIRD LITESPORT U, registration: N415US
Injuries: 1 Fatal.

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 performing a high-speed taxi in his amateur-built airplane when it inadvertently became airborne. The inadvertent flight was the airplane's first flight. The pilot requested a landing clearance and was given one. The pilot reported that he had trouble getting the airplane's nose down. He reported a MAYDAY and indicated that he had no control of the airplane. He was given a clearance to land on any runway. During his last transmission, the pilot reported that he could not keep the nose down. The airplane was observed descending tail-end down and then nose down. The airplane impacted the ground, coming to rest about two miles east of the airport. An on-scene examination of the airplane revealed that the wing separated from the fuselage. The separation was consistent with overload. No other anomalies were detected. The on-scene investigation did not document center of gravity or trim settings.

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

The pilot's reported inability to control his amateur-built airplane for undetermined reasons after the airplane inadvertently became airborne while conducting a high-speed taxi.

Full narrative available

Index for Dec2010 | Index of months