On May 30, 1999, about 1545 Alaska daylight time, a tundra tire equipped Piper PA-18 airplane, N8570C, received substantial damage during takeoff from the Port Alsworth Airstrip, Port Alsworth, Alaska. The airplane was being operated as a visual flight rules (VFR) flight under Title 14, CFR Part 91, when the accident occurred. The certificated private pilot, and the one passenger aboard, were not injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and a VFR flight plan was filed. The flight originated at Merrill Field, Anchorage, Alaska, about 1340.

During a telephone conversation with the National Transportation Safety Board investigator-in-charge on June 1, the pilot reported that he was attempting a southerly departure from a 3,000 feet long gravel strip. He stated that during the takeoff roll, a gust of wind caused the airplane to veer to the left. He applied full right aileron and right rudder, but the airplane continued to veer left. The left wing struck a stand of trees, and pivoted about 90 degrees to the left. The pilot noted that there were no preaccident mechanical anomalies with the airplane.

The airplane sustained substantial damage to the left wing, and fuselage.

The closest official weather observation station is Port Alsworth. On May 30, at 1548, an Aviation Routine Weather Report (METAR) was reporting in part: Wind, 209 degrees (magnetic) at 11 knots; visibility, 30 statute miles; clouds, 4,000 feet broken, 8,000 feet broken; temperature, 50 degrees F; dew point, 41 degrees F; altimeter, 29.75 inHg.

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