NTSB Identification: CEN11CA498
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Tuesday, July 19, 2011 in Williams Lake, MI
Probable Cause Approval Date: 10/20/2011
Aircraft: PIPER J3C-65, registration: N88000
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.

The pilot landed after performing a local flight with a passenger. The passenger, who was seated in the front seat, exited the airplane. The pilot then departed on another local flight. During the approach for landing, while turning from the base leg to final approach, he was unable to move the left rudder pedal. The airplane entered a right hand spiral and impacted a tree and terrain. The airplane sustained substantial damage to the fuselage and wings. A postaccident examination of the airplane revealed that the front seat belt buckle had jammed between the rear seat rudder pedal and floor board.

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

A loss of control during approach due to the front seat passenger's belt buckle being wedged between the rear seat,the rudder pedal and floor board.

Full narrative available

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