On February 5, 1995, at 1340 eastern standard time, a Piper PA28- 181, N38394, operated by a private pilot on a pleasure flight, sustained substantial damage when it ran off the departure end of the runway and struck a tree during the landing roll at the Aretz Airport in Lafayette, Indiana. The pilot, the sole occupant, reported no injuries. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed for the flight, which operated on a VFR flight plan. The flight operated under 14 CFR Part 91, and originated from Bloomington, Indiana, approximately 1250.

The pilot planned to land on runway 25 (2,812' X 50', asphalt) at Aretz Airport, with winds reported to be out of 330 degrees at 13 knots, with gusts to 18 knots. He stated because he anticipated "...a sizeable crosswind component and potential gust..." he elected to maintain a higher than normal airspeed and reduced flap setting for the approach to the runway. The pilot reported the airplane was high on final approach, but seemed about ready to touch down at the midpoint of the runway. The pilot stated: "...before it set down, the plane seemed to catch a gust of air and continue floating...I did not feel that I had sufficient room nor speed to safely execute a go-around... .The plane finally set down approximately one hundred feet from the end of the runway."

The pilot stated he applied brakes and full aft elevator, but could not stop before the departure end of the runway. The airplane ran off the end of the runway, onto the grass and collided with a tree. The pilot's written statement indicated he had 104 hours total flight time, including 6 hours in the accident make and model airplane.

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