MIA97LA244
MIA97LA244

On September 14, 1997, about 1415 central daylight time, a Maule Aerospace Technology Corporation M-7-235, N5662S, registered to the Sprint Auction Company, Inc., experienced a loss of control during the takeoff roll at the Louisville Winston County Airport, Louisville, Mississippi. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time and no flight plan was filed for the 14 CFR Part 91 business flight. The airplane was substantially damaged and the commercial-rated pilot and one passenger were not injured. The flight was originating at the time of the accident.

The pilot stated that during the takeoff roll after the tailwheel was raised, the airplane "darted" to the left. He applied full right rudder input but continued the takeoff. The airplane veered off the left side of the runway, became airborne momentarily, and while maneuvering toward the runway, the left main landing gear contacted the runway and the wheel separated. He then banked the airplane to the left to align the airplane with the runway but the left wing tip contacted the runway. The airplane traveled across the runway, rotated 180 degrees about the vertical axis, and came to rest in a 25-foot deep embankment. He further stated that the wind was not a factor in the accident. Postcrash examination of the cockpit by the pilot revealed that the right rudder trim "T" handle was all the way in. Review of a placard beneath the handle revealed in part "pull turn right to...." The pilot stated that the normal position of the trim "T" handle when he is flying the airplane on takeoff is fully extended, which indicates full nose right trim.

Examination of the accident site by an FAA inspector revealed that off the left side of the runway, trees were damaged about 10-12 feet above ground level.

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