MIA97LA071
MIA97LA071

On January 22, 1997, about 1036 eastern standard time, a Socata TB-9, N121ER, registered to Embry-Riddle University was substantially damaged during takeoff, near Daytona Beach, Florida. The student pilot was not injured. Visual meteorological conditions (VMC) prevailed in the vicinity, and no flight plan had been filed. The local training flight was being conducted in accordance with Title 14 CFR Part 91. The flight was originating at the time of the accident.

The pilot stated that he checked his PQ (pilot qualification) code established by the University, and the code was 221. Code 221 required a maximum crosswind of 6 to 10 knots. After doing a run up he received clearance for takeoff and taxied onto runway 25L.

As the pilot added full power, the airplane started turning to the left. He slowly applied right rudder to correct for the "left pulling force." As he gained airspeed, the "left force" was "increasing." The wind was coming from his "left...south," but he did not know the speed. He than applied right rudder, but he could not get the airplane to go straight and maintain runway centerline. The airplane countinued to veer left, and the pilot elected to abort the takeoff. He stated, "...I was traveling at about 40-45 knots when [I] applied brake pressure. I felt the right side of the aircraft, what felt like lift off the ground. I feared I would flip the plane." When he released the brakes, the airplane departed the hard surface of the runway onto the grass, and struck a runway sign before stopping.

According to the FAA inspector's report, this was the student pilot's first solo flight from Dayton Beach Airport, and he had "no experience with crosswind takeoff procedure."

Local weather at the time of the accident, reported that the wind was from 160 degrees, at 9 knots, with wind gusts to 17 knots.

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