On August 29, 1998, about 1750 Alaska daylight time, a wheel equipped Cessna 185E airplane, N1987U, sustained substantial damage while landing at Merrill Field, Anchorage, Alaska. The airplane was being operated as a visual flight rules (VFR) local area flight under Title 14, CFR Part 91, when the accident occurred. The certificated airline transport pilot, and the three passengers aboard were not injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and no flight plan was filed. The flight originated at the Seldovia Airport, Seldovia, Alaska, about 1620.

In his written statement to the National Transportation Safety Board, the pilot reported that he was landing on runway 24, and on initial touchdown, the airplane bounced and became airborne. He recovered from the bounce, and added power to cushion the decent. He said that as the right main wheel touched down again, the airplane veered to the left, and continued off the left side of the runway. The airplane then nosed over, and received substantial damage to the wings, fuselage, doors, and rudder assembly.

The pilot noted that there were no preaccident mechanical anomalies with the airplane.

Merrill Field weather observation at the time of the accident consisted of: Sky conditions and ceiling, 6000 feet broken; visibility, 10 statute miles; wind, variable at 6 knots.

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