On August 4, 2001, about 1715 eastern daylight time, a Cessna 172L, N7821G, was substantially damaged during an aborted landing at the Wood County Airport (PKB), Parkersburg, West Virginia. The certificated student pilot sustained serious injuries. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and no flight plan was filed for the local instructional flight conducted under 14 CFR Part 91.

According to the student pilot, after he was cleared to land on runway 03, he began to feel ill and decided to land on runway 10. As the airplane touched down, it bounced, and the student pilot applied power to "even it out a little." The airplane touched back down on the main landing gear and began to pull to the right. The student pilot thought he was going to run off the right side of the runway and applied power to abort the landing. As the airplane began to climb, the student pilot observed trees in front of him, and realized that the airplane would not climb over them. He then elected to land the airplane in a clearing prior to the trees. The airplane passed over the clearing and impacted the trees, then came to rest on its right side.

A witness stated that he observed the airplane about 20 feet above the runway, "in a real high nose attitude or a high angle of attack." The airplane did not appear to gain any altitude for about 75 percent of the runway. The witness then lost sight of the airplane as it passed by a hangar.

A Federal Aviation Administration inspector examined the wreckage after the accident and observed the flaps in the "retracted position." No abnormalities were observed with the airframe or engine.

The winds reported at PKB, about the time of the accident, were variable at 3 knots.

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