On July 12, 1999, about 1250 eastern daylight time, a Cessna 172M, N42246, was destroyed while landing at Hamburg Inc. Airport, Hamburg, New York. The certificated private pilot was seriously injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed for the local flight which had originated from Hamburg about 1 hour earlier. No flight plan had been filed for the personal flight conducted under 14 CFR Part 91.

According to inspectors from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), the pilot had flown with a flight instructor earlier in the day and practiced takeoffs and landings. The flight instructor then exited the airplane and the pilot continued with his practice.

In the NTSB Pilot/Operator Aircraft Accident Report Form, the pilot stated:

"I was practicing takeoff and landings on runway 19 at Hamburg Airport in Cessna 172 N42246. I was PIC and alone on board. I inadvertently extended only minimal flaps and therefor landed fast. A sudden wind change compounded this situation. I was unable to stop, propoised three times, ran off end of runway and the aircraft fell down a ravine that borders the airport to the south. Fire destroyed the aircraft."

One witness reported:

"...I saw Cessna C-172 N42246 land long and fast at Hamburg Airport Runway 19 (about 1/2 way). The aircraft hit nose first (slightly) and bounce 2 more times then overshoot the runway and fall down the ravine. The wind had been favoring Runway 19 but very suddenly swung around to favor Runway 01...."

Another witness reported:

"...The aircraft was attempting to land but was landing downwind at very high speed for final and flaps full up position. Aircraft began porpoising at end of runway and over guard rail into gorge...."

The terrain beyond the end of the runway sloped down to a creek, about 100 feet below the level of the runway. The airplane settled into trees at the bottom of the ravine, and both wings were sheared off. A post crash fire developed and the fuselage was destroyed.

The FAA Inspector reported there was about 50 feet of grass overrun at the end of the runway. This was followed by a road, and then a guard rail that was about 2 feet high. Marks were found in the grass and on the top of the guard rail that were similar in width to the main landing gear width.

The pilot reported the winds were variable at 8 knots. A check of the winds at Buffalo International Airport, located 15 nautical miles northeast revealed the winds were variable the hour prior to the accident, and near the time of the accident they were from 130 degrees at 8 knots. At Dunkirk, New York, located 21 miles southwest of Hamburg, the winds were variable 2 hours prior to the accident, and near the time of the accident they were from 020 degrees at 5 knots.

In the NTSB Form 6120.1/2, the pilot reported his total time as 104 hours, his pilot in command time as 30 hours, and 7 hours in make and model.

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