On August 17, 1997, at 1730 Alaska daylight time, a Cessna 180H float equipped airplane, N91412, was destroyed when it impacted water during takeoff from Index Lake, 32 miles northeast of Arctic Village, Alaska, at position 68-19 degrees north latitude, 144-15 degrees west longitude. The private certificated pilot and single passenger were uninjured. The airplane was owned and operated by Merle D. Jantz of North Pole, Alaska, as a personal flight under 14 CFR Part 91. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the accident, and an extended flight plan was on file with the FAA Fairbanks Flight Service Station.

Winds were reported by the pilot as variable from northwest to northeast, and gusting to 25 knots. The aircraft weight according to the pilot was 2,947 pounds. The maximum allowable takeoff weight is 2,950 pounds.

The pilot stated to an FAA inspector, and in his NTSB Pilot-Operator Report, that after taking off in a northeast direction from the 5,000 foot long lake, the airspeed reached 75 mph. He indicated that he believes the wind shifted, and as he retracted the flaps the airspeed dropped to 40 mph, and the right wing stalled. He reported the airplane was at 50-60 feet agl when the stall occurred. He was unable to recover from the stall, and the airplane impacted the water.

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