On July 10, 1996, at 0700 central daylight time (cdt), a Cessna 188, N9542J, was substantially damaged when the airplane impacted with terrain approximately two miles north of the Independence Airport, Independence, Iowa. The airplane was loaded with dry insecticide, and insecticide was found on the ground just prior to the first impact point. The commercial rated pilot was uninjured in the accident. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the 14 CFR part 137 flight, and no flight plan had been filed.

The pilot reported on NTSB form 6120.1/2 that at takeoff, the airplane had 1,200 pounds of dry chemicals, and 240 pounds of fuel on board. The pilot reported that after takeoff, the airplane would not gain airspeed or altitude, and never left ground effect. The pilot reported that on the previous day the temperatures were higher, and with the same load as the accident flight the airplane operated with no difficulties.

After the accident no abnormalities were noted with the airframe or the engine. All engine controls were found attached, and all cylinders had compression when the crankshaft was rotated. The magneto's appeared to operate normally when checked, and when the oil filter was cut open no visible contamination was found. The turbocharger turbine wheel rotated freely after the accident. The air induction system to the engine was compromised. The rudder and elevator controls cables were still attached. The aileron cables were separated from the aileron, and showed signs similar to an overload failure. The airplane's hopper was compromised, and the dry chemicals were not weighed following the accident.

The airplane's left wing, landing gear and engine were separated from the fuselage of the airplane, during the accident.

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