LAX96LA123
LAX96LA123

On February 29, 1996, at 1311 hours Pacific standard time, a Cessna U206, N2132F, collided with the surface of runway 16L, after the nose gear collapsed during the landing roll at the Van Nuys Airport, Van Nuys, California. The airplane sustained substantial damage and the solo student pilot was not injured. The airplane was being operated as a local instructional flight from the Van Nuys airport when the accident occurred. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time.

The pilot indicated that she remained in the airport traffic pattern and was practicing take off and landings. During the first landing, the pilot landed on the main landing gear with the control yoke "full back." When the pilot released pressure on the yoke, the nose gear collapsed. The nose cowling contacted the runway and the propeller was bent. The airplane then veered left off the runway after the left main landing gear contacted the runway shoulder.

Examination of the airplane by an Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) airworthiness inspector revealed the nose gear wheel had fractured, deflating the nose tire. The FAA inspector indicated he observed evidence of corrosion on the fractured wheel.

The wheel was examined by Cessna Aircraft Company under the supervision of the FAA. According to the Cessna Aircraft Company metallurgist, the wheel sustained impact damage to adjacent areas of the wheel rim flanges. Corrosion pitting was found in the fracture surface. There was no evidence of corrosion fatigue features found in the fracture surface. According to the aircraft manufacturer, metallography and scanning electron microscope evaluation of the broken wheel indicated overload as the mode of cracking.

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