FTW01LA077
FTW01LA077

On March 13, 2001, at 1145 central standard time, an Ercoupe 415-C airplane, N93504, was substantially damaged when it impacted trees and terrain during final approach to the Clover Field Airport, Houston, Texas. The private pilot, who was the registered owner and operator of the airplane, sustained serious injuries. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and a flight plan was not filed for the 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 personal flight. The local flight originated from the Clover Field Airport at 1130.

According to the pilot, he was executing touch-and-go landings to runway 14R. He reported that he misjudged the turn from the downwind leg to the base leg, which resulted in a premature descent. He stated that he should have executed a go-around; however, he elected to continue toward the runway. Subsequently, the airplane's altitude on the final approach leg was low and the left wing contacted trees. The airplane then entered a descent and impacted the ground.

Witnesses verified that the airplane was executing touch-and-go landings to runway 14R. One witness reported that he observed the airplane on final approach and it "looked different" than it had on previous approaches. They observed the airplane "bank steeply to the left" and, subsequently, impact the ground.

According to FAA inspectors, who examined the airplane at the accident site, both wings were bent aft. The right wing's skin separated from the leading edge aft, which exposed the main wing spar. They added that the fuselage, empennage, and tail structure sustained structural damage.

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