ATL93LA129
ATL93LA129

On July 16, 1993, at 1930 central daylight time, a Cessna 172, N65735, collided with trees after the pilot landed long on a private grass airstrip near Summerdale, Alabama. The personal flight operated under 14 CFR Part 91 with no flight plan filed. Visual weather conditions prevailed at the time of the accident. The airplane was substantially damaged, and the pilot and passenger were not injured. The flight departed Auburn, Alabama, at 1735 hours.

The non-instrument rated pilot and his instrument rated passenger arrived at the planned destination and observed that the wind was calm. They established a visual approach procedure for the north sod runway, lowered the flaps 30 degrees, and touched down at the mid-field point. According to the pilot, during the landing roll, he observed a ditch off the departure end of the runway. To avoid colliding with the ditch, the pilot pulled back on the yoke, cleared the ditch, and collided with trees 300 feet beyond the departure end of the north runway.

According to the Cessna 172 flight manual, approximately 625 feet of runway is needed for a normal landing roll on a dirt or sod surface; no wet surface landing roll information was available. Additionally, the pilot did not report experiencing a mechanical malfunction or component failure. Finally, according to the Executive Director of Auburn University Aviation, the accident airport was not an approved landing site.

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