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Aviation Accident

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NTSB Identification: GAA15CA243
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Sunday, August 30, 2015 in New Enterprise, PA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 11/05/2015
Aircraft: CESSNA 172, registration: N8404X
Injuries: 2 Uninjured.

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 after a "normal" landing, he performed a 180 degree turn at the end of the grass airstrip and started his takeoff roll. After accelerating to 65 miles per hour, he reported that the airplane became airborne at the crest of an incline, but about 20 feet above the ground the airplane began to "quickly lose airspeed." The stall warning horn sounded, the left wing dropped, and the airplane entered an aerodynamic stall. Subsequently, the airplane impacted terrain and collided with a fence at the end of the grass airstrip. The fuselage and both wings sustained substantial damage.

The pilot stated there were no mechanical malfunctions or failures with the airplane that would have precluded normal operation.

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident as follows:
  • The pilot's exceedance of the critical angle of attack during takeoff, which resulted in an aerodynamic stall and impact with terrain.