LAX95LA152
LAX95LA152

On April 1, 1995, at 1450 Pacific standard time, an American Champion 8KCAB, N111LS, sustained substantial damage while making a wheel landing at Long Beach, California. The aircraft was operated by Hart Air Squadron Jg 54 and was on a local flight. Visual meteorological conditions were prevalent at the time and no flight plan had been filed. Neither the certificated private pilot nor his passenger were injured. The flight originated from the Long Beach airport at 1400 on the day of the accident.

The pilot reported that he had been cleared to land on runway 25R and was prepared to execute a wheel landing. After initially touching down at 85 mph, he felt the aircraft bounce slightly then drift right of the runway centerline. He recovered from the bounce and realigned the aircraft with the runway. When he again touched down, he lowered his left wing slightly to compensate for the left crosswind.

During rollout, the pilot noticed that the aircraft began to list excessively toward its left side. He attempted to correct the condition by applying right aileron, but lost control effectiveness as the aircraft slowed. The aircraft continued to list until the left wing contacted the runway. As the left gear collapsed, the aircraft veered right, coming to a stop near midfield and off the right side of the runway.

The postaccident inspection of the aircraft revealed that the left main landing gear attachment bracket of the aircraft had separated in the area of the weld. The separated weld section was sent to the National Transportation Safety Board Materials Laboratory Division for inspection. A stereo microscope examination of the fractures revealed a lack of weld fusion. The aircraft was manufactured in January of 1995 and had accrued 71 total hours of operation.

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