IAD01LA054
IAD01LA054

On May 4, 2001, at 1500 eastern daylight time, a Piper PA-32-301, N434DJ, was substantially damaged during a runway overrun at the Seamans Field Airport, Factoryville, Pennsylvania. The certificated private pilot was not injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed for the personal flight that originated at Allentown, Pennsylvania, approximately 1400. No flight plan was filed for the flight conducted under 14 CFR Part 91.

In a written statement, the pilot said:

"Entered traffic pattern for runway 22 at Seamans Airport after overlying the field, but not seeing the windsock. Final approach was slightly high and I corrected, however at touchdown my groundspeed was excessive and despite full braking, I overran the runway. After skidding on the grass past the end of the runway, my nosewheel tipped over a hill, pulling the plane down the hill."

During a telephone interview, the pilot said:

"I was a little high on final, with the prop forward and full flaps. My approach speed was 85. I slipped to get it down, and I nosed it over to about 95, but my groundspeed was a heck of a lot faster than that.

"It was a 2,500-foot runway, and when I touched down, my groundspeed was pretty fast. I had an opportunity to go around, but I laid on the brakes. I just kept skidding, and overran the runway. I wasn't going that fast, but it just wouldn't stop. I think I had a tailwind.

"I ran over into the grass and almost got it stopped, but the nose wheel dropped over the hill, and I went down the embankment."

The pilot was asked where the airplane touched down on the runway. He said:

"I'm not exactly sure. I shoot for the numbers, and I think I flared above the threshold. I think I touched down between one-third and one-half the way down the runway. I used a fair amount of runway.

"If you look at the skid marks, they start between one-half and two-thirds of the way down the runway, and I didn't put the brakes on right away."

In a written statement, one witness said:

"The incident happened Friday, May 4th between 2:45 and 3:00 p.m. I was working outside parallel to the runway where the plane landed. I saw it at about 75 feet above the runway, diving at the runway, and then touched down about 1000 feet from the end. The flaps were still extended throughout the roll-out preventing full braking action. I lost sight of the plane when it went behind the hangar. That's all I saw until I got to the scene, then I saw the airplane sitting with its nose gear collapsed on the road."

In a written statement, a second witness said:

"I saw the airplane from the front hangar when I left the building. I could hear the brakes squealing and saw it trying to stop from about the point of the gas pumps on to the end. It touched down before I first saw it. At that time I did not know if it managed to stop or whether it went off the runway but at the same time 3 or 4 … mechanics and 1 or 2 customers ran to the airplane to determine that nobody was hurt. "

When questioned about the handling and performance of the airplane, the pilot said:

"It was perfect, the airplane was doing quite well."

The pilot reported 173 hours of flight experience, 139 hours of which were in make and model.

The weather reported at Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania, 19 miles south of Seaman's Airport was clear skies with variable winds at 4 knots.

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