ERA11LA154
ERA11LA154

On February 18, 2011, about 1415 eastern standard time, a Cessna 177B, N11625, operated by a commercial pilot, was substantially damaged during an aborted takeoff at Reading Regional Airport (RDG), Reading, Pennsylvania. The certificated commercial pilot and passenger were not injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and no flight plan was filed for the personal flight that was conducted under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91.

According to the pilot, he and the passenger originally departed from Doylestown Airport (DYL), Doylestown, Pennsylvania, at 1200, and flew to RDG without incident, to have lunch. After lunch, the pilot attempted to depart RDG from runway 31, a 6,350-foot-long, 150-foot-wide, asphalt runway. The airplane accelerated and lifted off the runway normally; however, the pilot subsequently noticed that the elevator control was "frozen" and could not be moved. The pilot reduced engine power and aborted the takeoff. The airplane struck the runway hard and bounced, before coming to rest.

The airplane's nose gear collapsed and the firewall was substantially damaged.

Examination of the airplane by a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) inspector revealed that the nut that secured the shock mount to the pilot's instrument panel on the right side was missing, and the left side shock mount was sheared. A portion of the instrument panel had shifted downward and the directional gyro housing was in contact with a portion of the yoke control column, which restricted its movement.

The pilot stated that the flight controls moved freely during his pre-takeoff checks.

According to the FAA inspector, the airplane had been operated for about 60 hours, since its most recent annual inspection, which was performed on September 27, 2010.

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