SEA02LA094
SEA02LA094

On June 2, 2002, approximately 0950 mountain daylight time, a Piper PA-18-135 airplane, N9967Q, registered to Taildragon LLC of Eagle, Idaho, and being flown by a private pilot, was substantially damaged when it ground looped during landing at Payette Municipal Airport, Payette, Idaho. The pilot and one passenger were not injured in the accident. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and the flight was on a round-robin visual flight rules (VFR) flight plan from Boise, Idaho, to Weiser, Idaho, to Payette, to Boise at the time of the accident. The flight was conducted under the provisions of 14 CFR 91.

In a written statement, the pilot reported that on downwind for landing on runway 31, he noted that the wind sock was hanging limp. Turbulence was noted on the approach and a crosswind correction was applied to maintain runway centerline. The pilot reported that during the flare for a three point landing, he noted an increased descent rate beginning about six feet above ground level. The pilot applied power to arrest the descent rate, however, when the aircraft touched down it bounced. When the aircraft settled to the surface again, the right wing was lifted by a sudden gust of wind. The aircraft weathervaned to the right and the pilot added power in an attempt to regain rudder authority. The pilot was unable to maintain directional control and the aircraft ground looped. The right wing contacted the surface, substantially damaging the wing spar and several ribs.

The pilot reported no mechanical failures or malfunctions with the aircraft at the time.

After the accident, the pilot noted that the wind was blowing from about 330 degrees at three to five knots, with intermittent gusts from 10 to 12 knots.

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