On April 9, 2001, about 1330 eastern daylight time, a Cessna 172R, N2462T, was substantially damaged during landing at the Lawrence Municipal Airport (LWM), Lawrence, Massachusetts. The certificated student pilot was not injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and no flight plan was filed for the local solo flight conducted under 14 CFR Part 91.

According to the student pilot, the purpose of the flight was to practice touch-and-go landings at LWM. He departed from runway 23 about 1300, and performed two landings uneventfully. The student pilot stated that the third approach "looked good," and the airspeed was about 65 knots on final. He reported that he "flared too early," bounced twice, and then the airplane "hit hard" on the nose gear. The nose gear sheared off, and the airplane departed the left side of the runway.

Examination of the airplane by a Federal Aviation Administration inspector revealed substantial damage to the firewall, and the nose gear was torn off. Additionally, both propeller blades were bent back, and a "scuff mark" was noted on the front side of one of the blades. No mechanical malfunctions were observed with the landing gear.

The winds reported at LWM at 1354, were from 310 degrees at 6 knots.

The student pilot reported 55 hours of total flight experience in the accident airplane.

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