On January 26, 2011, about 1510 Central Standard Time, a Piper PA-28-235, N9478W, sustained substantial damage following a forced landing in a field near Matador, Texas. The airplane was registered to N223BT LLC, Ballinger, Texas, and operated by the pilot. The personal flight was being conducted under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91, without a flight plan. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the accident. There were no injuries to the pilot or single passenger. The cross-country flight was originating at the time of the accident, and was en route to Ballinger, Texas.

The pilot reported that he had just departed from a small private airstrip south of Matador. Approximately 700 feet above ground level, he initiated a right turn to avoid some towers north of the airstrip. While in the right turn, the engine lost total power. The pilot decided to land in a small clearing, but was unable to reach the area, and the airplane landed in an area of mesquite brush. During the landing, the left main gear and nose wheel separated from the airplane, and the left wing contacted the ground, sustaining substantial damage.

A postaccident examination of the airplane by an NTSB investigator failed to identify any abnormalities that would have contributed to the loss of engine power.

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