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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 230936
Last updated: 27 November 2019
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Type:Silhouette image of generic BE35 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Beechcraft 35
Registration: N5321E
C/n / msn: D-5801
Fatalities:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 4
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Substantial
Location:Harrisville, MI -   United States of America
Phase: Take off
Departure airport:Harrisville, MI (5Y0)
Destination airport:Detroit/Grosse Ile, MI (ONZ)
Investigating agency: NTSB
The private pilot reported that he completed a preflight inspection and an engine run-up with no anomalies noted. With about 20 gallons of fuel in the left tank, he taxied the airplane to the runway and extended the flaps to 10į. He started the takeoff roll and noted that the first 200 ft of the runway was soft and consisted of long grass, while the rest of the runway consisted of sand and weed patches. The pilot stated that during the takeoff roll, the nosewheel lifted off the runway around 300 ft and the main landing gear lifted off near midfield; he kept the airplane in ground effect. When the airplane was about 3/4 of the way down the runway, while still in ground effect, it would not gain altitude, and the left wing contacted trees. The pilot aborted the takeoff and attempted to stop the airplane in the grass but collided with trees at the end of the runway. The pilot reported that there were no mechanical malfunctions or anomalies with the engine or airplane that would have precluded normal operation. The pilot stated that he could not get the airplane up to speed because of the tall grass on the runway.
A 32-second video of the takeoff attempt revealed the beginning of the takeoff roll on the grass runway. At 14 seconds, the airplane veered toward the left side of the runway until 22 seconds, when a loud noise was heard, likely the airplane colliding with trees. The airplane made a sharp right turn, then slid on the runway where it came to rest in trees at the end of the runway. It is not clear from the video if the airplane became airborne as the pilot stated.
The calculated takeoff weight was 12 lbs under the maximum takeoff weight of 2,950 lbs. The calculated center of gravity was 0.07 inch beyond the aft limit of 84.7 inches aft of datum. In addition, the pilot stated after the accident that the data he had for the airport showed an additional 600 ft of available runway.
Based on the available video evidence, the pilotís delayed decision to abort the takeoff did not leave enough runway length for the airplane to stop before colliding with trees at the end of the runway.†It is likely that the airplane being loaded near the maximum gross weight and the airplaneís center of gravity aft of the allowable limit contributed to its difficulty gaining adequate speed for takeoff. These factors, along with the pilotís incorrect runway length data, likely contributed to his delayed decision to abort the takeoff, as he expected the airplane to gain adequate speed for takeoff without difficulties.

Probable Cause: The pilotís delayed decision to abort the takeoff, which resulted in the loss of lateral control of the airplane and collision with trees at the end of the runway. Contributing to the accident was the pilotís decision to depart with a center of gravity exceeding the aft limit and his inadequate preflight planning of the airplaneís weight and balance calculations and runway length data.



Accident investigation:
Investigating agency: NTSB
Status: Investigation completed
Duration: 1 year and 2 months
Download report: Final report

Revision history:

27-Nov-2019 07:17 ASN Update Bot Added

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