On December 29, 1995, at 1700 central standard time, a Taylorcraft BC-12, N39244, was substantially damaged when it lost control during takeoff climb and impacted the terrain near Winner, South Dakota. The pilot was seriously injured. The 14 CFR Part 91 flight had departed a stubble wheat field. The pilot had intended to land at Bob Riley Field, at Winner, South Dakota, which was about four miles away. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the accident and no flight plan was filed.

The pilot reported that he had trouble getting the engine started since he had to pull the propeller through twenty times before it started. After the engine run-up he departed the field to the southeast. He reported that during the initial climb he felt that the engine was not giving quite the full power he expected.

During a telephone conversation, the pilot reported that he tried to check the magnetos and carburetor heat during the takeoff climb. He stated that he was not paying attention to what he was doing, and that he, "...basically just stalled it and spun it into the ground." He reported that it was pilot error without a doubt, and that he could have flown it down to the ground.

He reported that he had owned the airplane for about a month. He had 30 hours total time in the airplane which included 10 hours of dual flight time.

A witness reported that the wing and tail section were vibrating "pretty rough" during the takeoff from the stubble field. The witness reported that the airplane got up in the air pretty fast and did not use more than 100 yards during the ground run. He reported that the airplane banked hard left, and then cut back hard to the right before it went straight over and nosed straight in. The witness reported that the airplane had climbed about 150 feet.

An Airworthiness Inspector from the Federal Aviation Administration examined the wreakage. He reported that after initial liftoff the airplane settled down near the ground, and then climbed in a nose high attitude. He reported that the aircraft stalled, spun, and impacted the ground almost vertically straight down. The highest altitude gained was 150 to 200 feet above ground level.

The engine was examined and it had continuity and the compression checked normal. The wooden propeller was splintered and only about 16 inches of the propeller remained intact.

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