On December 9, 2001, at 1100 central standard time, a Cessna 172L, N4303Q, operated by a private pilot, collided with a runway end identifier light control box following a loss of control on takeoff. The takeoff was being made on runway 18 (4,840 feet by 75 feet, asphalt) at the Reedsburg Municipal Airport, Reedsburg, Wisconsin. The pilot was not injured. The airplane was substantially damaged. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and no flight plan was filed.

The pilot reported that his seat slid back on takeoff and because the nose of the airplane was high, his forward visibility was limited. The pilot reported he felt a couple of "bumps". He then was able to slide the seat forward and abort the takeoff. The pilot reported that he taxied back to the runway and departed for Kenosha. He reported the airplane seemed to lack power during the flight. He was unaware of the damage to the airplane until he landed.

The pilot reported that he was trying to attach a hand held GPS unit to his leg with a cable when the seat slid back. He reported that the cable most likely became attached to the seat adjustment lever and this resulted in the lever being moved, and the seat sliding back.

Damage to the airplane included buckling and puncture damage to the lower fuselage, engine cowling, and left horizontal stabilizer, firewall damage, the tip of one propeller was missing and the other propeller tip was damaged, and a section of the exhaust system was crushed.

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