ATL03LA032
ATL03LA032

On January 8, 2003, at 1020 central standard time, an Aero Commander 100, N3628X, registered to and owned by the pilot, collided with trees adjacent to the east runway at a private airstrip. The accident occurred during the initial takeoff from the private airstrip in Geneva, Alabama. The personal flight was operated under the provisions of 14 CFR Part 91 with no flight plan filed. Visual weather conditions prevailed at the time of the accident. The airplane was substantially damaged, and the private pilot was not injured. The local flight departed Geneva, Alabama, on January 8, 2003 at 1019.

According to the pilot, recent maintenance had been completed on the airplane in Geneva, and the purpose of the flight was to reposition the airplane to his home in Pensacola, Florida. The pilot stated that he preflight the airplane and performed a run up. The pilot taxied the airplane to the north departure end of the private grass airstrip. The pilot stated that the grass airstrip was approximately 2600 feet long.

As the airplane accelerated down the runway during the attempted takeoff, the pilot said the airplane became airborne for a few seconds but would not climb and he could not explain why. According to the pilot, while still airborne he elected to abort take off. The airplane touched down on the runway with approximately 400 feet of runway remaining. During landing roll the airplane veered to the left, and the pilot applied full power. The airplane then veered to the right and rolled off the right side of the runway and collided with trees.

Examination of the airplane revealed that the elevator trim was observed in the full nose down position. According to the pilot's operating handbook the pre-takeoff checklist requires the elevator trim set for takeoff. The right wing was damaged at the root and the right wing spar was bent. The right vertical stabilizer was damaged. During the on scene investigation the pilot stated that the airplane was developing full power. The pilot did not report any mechanical malfunctions prior to the accident.





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