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Aviation Accident

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NTSB Identification: CEN14CA427
14 CFR Part 137: Agricultural
Accident occurred Wednesday, August 13, 2014 in Cimarron, KS
Probable Cause Approval Date: 09/02/2014
Aircraft: AIR TRACTOR INC AT 401B, registration: N9071Z
Injuries: 1 Serious.

NTSB investigators used data provided by various entities, including, but not limited to, the Federal Aviation Administration and/or the operator and did not travel in support of this investigation to prepare this aircraft accident report.

The pilot reported that he was setting up to spray a corn field bordered by radio antennas. He had sprayed the field previously and planned to use the same pattern this time. However, on his initial pass, he focused on the inner guy wire anchor point, which caused him to inadvertently fly between the inner and outer guy wires. When he started to pull-up, the airplane struck the outer wire, separating 7 feet of the left wing from the airplane. The pilot was able to maintain control and ultimately returned to the departure airport. However, the airplane rolled to the left when he reduced power on landing and he lost control at that time. The pilot stated that there were no problems with the airplane prior to the accident; the engine and flight controls were performing normally before the impact with the guy wire.

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident as follows:
  • The pilot's failure to maintain clearance from the antenna guy wire during an aerial application pass.