On September 15, 1996, at 1930 hours mountain standard time, a Cessna 152, N5120H, drifted off the left side of the runway during the takeoff roll at San Carlos Airport, San Carlos, Arizona, and collapsed the nose gear. The pilot was beginning a visual flight rules personal flight to Prescott, Arizona. The airplane, registered to and operated by WGL, Inc., d.b.a. Aerleon Flight Services, North Las Vegas Airport, Las Vegas, Nevada, sustained substantial damage. The certificated private pilot, the sole occupant, was not injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed.

The pilot reported in a telephone interview conducted on September 20, 1996, that the airport's runway lights were inoperative. He said that during the takeoff ground roll the airplane's landing light failed. The pilot aborted the takeoff, but the airplane drifted off the left side of the runway. The airplane's nose gear collapsed when the airplane entered the soft terrain adjacent to the runway.

According to astrological data obtained from a computer generated Sun and Moon Information program, at the time of the accident, sunset ended at 1831 and the end of twilight was at 1856. The altitude of the sun was -13 degrees (below the horizon) and the altitude of the moon was 7.7 degrees (above the horizon). Only 9 percent of the moon was illuminated.

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