FTW97LA082
FTW97LA082

On January 14, 1997, approximately 1230 central standard time, a Garrett Baby Great Lakes homebuilt experimental bi-plane (tail wheel), N1030G, was substantially damaged following a loss of control during take off, from West Texas Airport, El Paso, Texas. The commercial pilot, the sole occupant and owner, received minor injuries. No flight plan was filed and visual meteorological conditions prevailed for the personal flight conducted under Title 14 CFR Part 91.

The pilot reported that after a normal run-up at the hold short line, he taxied onto the runway and lined up on centerline for take off. With the "stick just forward of neutral, and maintaining directional control with rudders", he slowly added power and began his take off roll. As the tail wheel lifted off the ground, he "went to full power (2,500 RPM)." Subsequently, the airplane began to slide sideways toward the left side of the runway, and just as flying airspeed was attained, the aircraft "began to porpoise." After departing the runway surface, the airplane struck a fence and a sand dune, coming to rest inverted. According to the pilot, the entire event took about 5-10 seconds, and the airplane traveled 500 feet.

The pilot/owner reported no mechanical problems with the aircraft. The aircraft sustained structural damage to the upper and lower left wings.

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