On December 17, 2000, about 1045 Alaska standard time, during a landing on runway 33 at Merrill Field, Anchorage, Alaska, a wheel/ski equipped Piper PA-14 airplane, N5178H, collided with a Cessna 150M, N6414K, that was taxiing after landing. Both airplanes received substantial damage. Both airplanes were being operated as visual flight rules (VFR) local area instructional flights, when the accident occurred. The Piper airplane was operated by the student pilot/owner of the airplane. He was accompanied by a commercial certificated pilot/flight instructor from Freedom Aviation, Anchorage. Both pilots were not injured. The Cessna airplane was operated by Aero Tech Flight Service Inc., Anchorage. The commercial certificated pilot/flight instructor, and the student pilot, were not injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed. Use your browsers 'back' function to return to synopsisReturn to Query Page
During a telephone conversation with the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) investigator-in-charge (IIC), on December 18, 2000, the flight instructor on board the Piper reported that the student had previously soloed a Citabria airplane from Freedom Aviation. The student then purchased the PA-14, and was receiving instruction in the airplane. The student had accrued about 37 hours total flight experience. The instructional flight consisted of several touch and go landings on runway 33. During the fourth landing, the student, who occupied the left seat, performed a wheel landing. The airplane began to drift slightly to the left of the centerline, and the student corrected the drift. The instructor said the airplane then encountered a sudden left crosswind. While still rolling on the main landing gear tires, the airplane began to slide on the runway surface to the right. The student pilot added full engine power to abort the landing. The flight instructor, who occupied the right seat, announced that he had the flight controls of the airplane, and attempted to regain control by holding left aileron and left rudder. When the instructor realized the airplane would not become airborne before departing the runway, he pulled the engine power to idle. The airplane continued to slide to the right, across a snow-covered grass area, and collided with the Cessna as it was taxiing southbound on taxiway Charlie. The instructor of the Piper airplane reported that the airplane did not have brakes installed on the right side of the airplane. Both airplanes received damage to their respective right wings and fuselage.
In the Pilot/Operator report, (NTSB Form 6120.1/2) submitted by the instructor of the Piper airplane, the instructor reported that the wind conditions were 300 degrees at 4 knots with gusts to 25 knots. In the narrative portion of the 6120.1/2, the instructor said the wind conditions were 360 degrees at 9 knots with no turbulence or wind shear. After the accident, the instructor said the wind gusts were 25 to 30 knots.
In the Pilot/Operator report submitted by the instructor of the Cessna airplane, he reported the wind conditions as 330 degrees at 8 knots, gusts to 10 knots.
At 1053, an Aviation Routine Weather Report (METAR) at Merrill Field was reporting, in part: Wind, variable at 5 knots; visibility, 10 statute miles; clouds and sky condition, 4,500 feet scattered, 7,500 feet broken, 9,000 feet overcast; temperature, 19 degrees F; dew point, 10 degrees F; altimeter, 29.42 inHg.