On June 8, 1998, at 2130 eastern daylight time, an amateur built Leone Smith Mini Plane, N5281U, owned and operated by a private pilot, received substantial damage during a hard landing and post impact fire. The pilot sustained serious injuries. The accident occurred at the Woolsey Memorial Airport, near Northport, Michigan, when the airplane landed hard collapsing the main landing gear and rupturing the internal fuselage fuel tank. The accident occurred on runway 9 (3,663' x 140' dry/turf). A witness stated that this was the initial flight after repairs had been conducted from a previous landing accident. The personal 14 CFR part 91 flight was operating in visual meteorological conditions. No flight plan was on file. The local flight departed Kreegers private farm strip, near E. Leland Township, Michigan, about 2030. Use your browsers 'back' function to return to synopsisReturn to Query Page
The pilot was conducting the first flight in this airplane after repairs. He said in his written statement that he departed the farm strip and made a number of practice approached; however did not land. He then flew the airplane to the Woolsey Memorial Airport where he said that he made approximately six approaches before attempting a landing on runway 9. He said that by this time the sun was low and there were long shadows on the ground. He said that the first one-third of runway 9 was well lit with the remaining two-thirds in the shadows. He said he attempted to land on the sunlit portion. He said that when he, "Eased the power too much... ," the airplane dropped to the ground.