CHI96LA084
CHI96LA084

On January 27, 1996, at 1446 central standard time (cst), a Fitfox, N99SV, owned and operated by a private pilot, veered to the left, struck a snowbank, and nosed over while executing a landing at Eppley Airfield, Omaha, Nebraska. The airplane received substantial damage. The private pilot and passenger reported no injuries. The 14 CFR Part 91 was operating in visual meteorological conditions. No flight plan was filed. The flight originated from Dennison Municipal Airport, Dennison, Iowa, at 1300 cst.

From the pilot's written and telephone interview conducted on March 19, 1996, he stated that while taxiing at the North Omaha Airport the airplane went through some snow drifts and apparently snow accumulated in the left wheel fairing. Upon landing at Dennison Airport in Iowa, the airplane pulled to the right. The pilot compensated by applying opposite rudder and brakes. After a brief stop, the pilot needed full power to break loose. The pilot thought that the wheel was frozen to the pavement. While flying back to North Omaha Airport, the pilot realized that his left brake was probably frozen and decided that he would divert to Eppley Airfield because of the wider runway there. The pilot stated, "...Upon landing the left wheel was completely frozen and no amount of right brake would correct our left veer off the runway. We were nearly stopped when the mains hit the 2 1/2 foot wall of plowed snow which had iced to a solid mass on the side of the runway 32R. N99SV pitched up on its nose striking the prop and eventually fell over landing on its tail. In my opinion once the airplane took off from Dennison it was very unlikely, under the circumstances, that a safe landing could have been achieved... ." The pilot said that the left wheel fairing was packed with snow. Once the snow was removed the wheel rotated freely with no mechanical problems.

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