On July 19, 1998, about 1830 eastern daylight time, a Piper PA 28-140, N5755F, was destroyed when it impacted terrain during the initial climb, after takeoff from Knox County Regional Airport, Rockland (RKD), Maine. The certificated student pilot (SP) sustained minor injures. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and no flight plan had been filed for the local instructional flight conducted under 14 CFR Part 91.

In a written statement, the SP said he was performing a soft field takeoff from runway 21 at RKD. He further stated:

"...As airplane turned to point down runway I pulled yoke full aft, power full, [and] rolled down runway. Plane wallowed into air at approximately 60 MPH. I pushed nose forward, left wing dropped. Plane wandered to side of runway. I lost ground effect. Left wing dropped. Plane looped to left. I tried to correct. Apparently pulled nose up too much [and] stalled...."

The airplane's left wing tip and propeller struck the ground. The airplane cartwheeled, and came to rest in a swampy area on the left side of the runway, where a post crash fire ensued.

Examination of wreckage by a Federal Aviation Administration Inspector did not reveal any evidence a mechanical malfunction of the airframe or engine.

The SP reported 43 hours of total flight experience, all in make and model.

Winds reported at RKD, at 1855, were from 230 degrees at 7 knots.

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