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Aviation Accident

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NTSB Identification: GAA17CA480
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Friday, July 28, 2017 in Poughkeepsie, NY
Probable Cause Approval Date: 11/14/2017
Aircraft: THOMAS J HANKAMP VAN'S AIRCRAFT RV4, registration: N9214
Injuries: 1 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 of the tailwheel-equipped airplane reported that, during a “taxi test” in crosswind conditions, he overcorrected, and the airplane ground looped. Subsequently, the airplane exited the runway to the right and came to rest nose down.
The airplane sustained substantial damage to the firewall.
The pilot reported that there were no preaccident mechanical failures or malfunctions with the airplane that would have precluded normal operation.
The automated weather observation system on the accident airport reported that, about the time of the accident, the wind was from 320° at 5 knots. The pilot was departing from runway 06.
The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) inspector reported that, throughout many conversations with the pilot, the initial statement was that the pilot lost control during takeoff and did have intent for flight. The FAA inspector verified this after talking with the local tower, who had cleared the airplane for takeoff.


The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident as follows:
  • The pilot’s failure to maintain directional control during takeoff.