On July 14, 1997, at 1239 eastern daylight time, a Cessna 172M, N9679V, was substantially damaged when it collided with trees during an aborted landing at the New Jersey Central Regional Airport (47N), Manville, New Jersey. The certificated private pilot was seriously injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed for the personal flight that originated at 47N, at 1230. No flight plan had been filed for the local flight conducted under 14 CFR Part 91. Use your browsers 'back' function to return to synopsisReturn to Query Page
The pilot stated the airplane bounced as he attempted to land on Runway 25 at 47N. The airplane drifted to the right and he corrected to complete the landing. When the airplane bounced a second time, he aborted the landing. The pilot further stated:
"When the aircraft bounced a second time, I decided to go around. I applied full throttle and established a climb attitude. I realized that I was also moving sideways toward the trees, but I thought I would clear them and that attempting to turn would reduce the climb performance. There was only a few seconds from the second bounce until my being over the trees. I heard branches scraping the undercarriage."
Two witnesses provided statements to the Hillsborough Township Police Department. One witness reported:
"It appeared to be a normal approach, but when he hit the runway and landed, he hit pretty hard on all three wheels and he bounced up into the air. He then came back down on the nose wheel, hit hard. Consequently the rear, the two main wheels hit the runway and the plane bounced again up in the air...It appeared he was fighting control of the airplane...stalled the airplane out...and he crashed into the wooded section to the right of the runway 25."
A member of the Civil Air Patrol who witnessed the accident, reported in a written statement:
"...a C-172 aborted landing and attempted a go around. It was an extreme density altitude day...OAT (Outside Air Temperature) was about 95 degrees and the humidity was high, possibly 85 - 90 percent. The plane had what appeared to be 20 degrees of flaps and was traveling at about 50 MPH when he tried to climb out. Initially he might have been 15 feet above the runway. He increased his angle of attack to what looked like 15 degrees and while he managed to climb to maybe 75 feet, his airspeed bled off quickly and the plane began to wallow. There was about a 5 - 10 knot cross wind at 90 degrees from the south that caught the plane just as it began to stall and carried it over the woods between the runway and the railroad tracks at which point he departed controlled flight and made contact with terrain at an estimated 80 degree angle."
In a telephone interview, a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Aviation Safety Inspector reported that an examination of the pilot's logbook revealed the pilot had a total flight experience of 337 hours. Further examination revealed that he had flown 4 hours in the past year, 3 hours of which were in the Cessna 172. His last flight prior to the accident was flown June 16, 1997, and was 1.7 hours in duration.
The Inspector stated that examination of the accident site revealed diagonal slash cuts in the trees surrounding and above the airplane wreckage. He stated that he found the throttle control "full in," the mixture control "full rich," and the carburetor heat control "full on." The Inspector stated that the rescue personnel reported retracting the flaps to aid in extracting the pilot.
The pilot reported there were no mechanical deficiencies with the airplane.