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Aviation Accident

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NTSB Identification: GAA17CA552
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Thursday, September 21, 2017 in Franklin, PA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 04/23/2018
Aircraft: HENCKEN WILLIAM PIETENPOL AIR CAMPER, registration: N40WH
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 reported that, during the takeoff roll, the experimental tailwheel-equipped airplane’s left wing dropped. The pilot corrected with right aileron input and back pressure on the control yoke. However, the airplane veered off the runway, bounced, and then impacted the runway in a right-wing-low attitude. Subsequently, the airplane nosed over.
Postaccident examination of the airplane revealed that the weld that connects the left main landing gear and the axle had failed.
The airplane sustained substantial damage to the right wing and empennage.


The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident as follows:
  • The failure of the weld that connects the left main landing gear and the axle during the takeoff roll.