On May 6, 1997, at 1500 central daylight time (cdt), a Cessna 152, N5225B, piloted by a student pilot, was substantially damaged when it nosed over during an off-runway landing roll. The pilot said he touched down on runway 25 (4,226' X 75' dry asphalt) at the Rochelle Municipal Airport, Rochelle, Illinois, without having the airplane aligned with the runway centerline. The airplane departed the left side of the runway shortly after touchdown. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the accident. The 14 CFR Part 91 instructional flight was operating on a VFR flight plan. The pilot reported no injuries. The flight departed Aurora, Illinois, at 1445 cdt.

The pilot said he was having trouble getting the airplane to line up with the runway centerline. He said he was unable to get the needed alignment no matter the amount of rudder application. The pilot said the airplane touched down with its nose pointed left of the runway centerline. He said, "...the plane went to [the] left on [the] grass. I tried to do a go-around and applied full power." The pilot said the airplane wouldn't lift off before or after he retracted the flaps. According to the pilot, he decided to abort the takeoff when he saw a fence in front of the airplane. He said he "...applied full brakes and [the]... prop dug in and [the airplane] flipped, it came to a full stop."

The manager of the fixed base operation at the airport said the wind was coming from the northwest about 10 to 15 knots. She said she did not see the airplane during the events leading to the accident. She said she heard its engine increase in power, followed by a loud "pop," and then silence. After the engine sound stopped, she said she looked out her office window and saw the airplane laying upside down in a field next to the airport.

The pilot said the accident was avoidable. He said he should have performed a go-around during the landing approach when he was unable to align the airplane's centerline with the runway centerline.

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