SEA05CA069
SEA05CA069

On April 3, 2005, about 1720 Pacific daylight time, a Cessna A188B, N4784Q, registered to and operated by the pilot, doing business as Sierra Pacific Aviation as a 14 CFR Part 137 aerial application flight, collided with the terrain shortly after takeoff from a private airstrip about four miles south of Palouse, Washington. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time and no flight plan was filed. The aircraft was substantially damaged and the commercial pilot, the sole occupant, was not injured.

During a telephone interview and subsequent written statement, the pilot reported that this was the 30th load of the day dispensing fertilizer. During the takeoff roll on runway 29 with calm winds, the aircraft was loaded with about 1,300 pounds of Urea. The pilot reported that the tail came up normally and that he didn't notice any problems with the engine. The aircraft lifted off and remained in ground effect while going upslope. The pilot reported that the aircraft then began to settle, at which time he started dumping his load, but not enough before the aircraft impacted upsloping terrain in a three point attitude. The aircraft became airborne for a short distance before colliding with the top of the next hill. The pilot reported that after exiting the aircraft, he noticed a slight tail wind.

The pilot, who is also a mechanic reported that both the main landing gear and tail wheel separated and that there was substantial damage to the left wing leading edge, as well as to the underside of the wing which was wrinkled back to the rear spar. The pilot reported no evidence of a mechanical failure or malfunction with the aircraft at the time of the accident sequence.

The nearest weather reporting facility located in Pullman, Washington, about 9 nautical miles south of the accident site was reporting at 1753 clear skies and 10 miles visibility. The wind was from 90 degrees at nine knots. The temperature was 09 degrees C., and the altimeter was 29.63" Hg.

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