On March 31, 1997, about 1000 eastern standard time, a Cessna 172N, N738NC, registered to Carolina Flying Club Inc., crashed during a forced landing near St. Matthews, South Carolina. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time and no flight plan was filed. The local instructional flight was originating at the time, and was being conducted in accordance with Title 14 CFR Part 91. The commercial-rated pilot/certified flight instructor (CFI), private pilot, and one passenger were not injured. The airplane was substantially damaged.

The CFI was instructing the non-current private pilot, in soft field takeoff procedures. The CFI said, as the airplane climbed above the trees that were located on both sides of the runway, the flight encountered windshear and he could not fly out of it. He said, the airplane went into a "left bank" and descended. He elected to land straight ahead in a field. During the landing in soft sand, the airplane nosed over.

According to the FAA inspector's statement the pilot used runway 14 (the downwind runway) because "runway 32 was upslope and the trees adjacent to the runway gave protection from the wind." The pilot said to the FAA inspector that he previously used the downwind runway and the "climbout was smooth."

The reported winds at the time of the accident were from 300 degrees at 20 knots, with gusts to 27 knots.

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