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N7160Z accident description

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Crash location 30.392222°N, 87.342777°W
Reported location is a long distance from the NTSB's reported nearest city. This often means that the location has a typo, or is incorrect.
Nearest city Pensacola, FL
30.421309°N, 87.216915°W
7.8 miles away

Tail number N7160Z
Accident date 06 Jan 2009
Aircraft type Piper PA-25-235
Additional details: None

NTSB description

On January 6, 2009, at 1045 central standard time, a Piper PA-25-235, N7160Z, crashed into the ground shortly after takeoff from the Ferguson Airport (82J) in Pensacola, Florida. The certificated commercial pilot was killed and the airplane sustained substantial damage. The flight was operated as a personal flight under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 91, and no flight plan was filed for the local flight. Visual meteorological conditions (VMC) prevailed at the time of the accident. The flight originated from 82J at 1010.

According to a witness at 82J, the pilot was practicing banner-tow maneuvers, which included takeoffs, landings, and slow flight. The witness noticed that the accident airplane was slow flying about 300 feet above runway 18. The winds were fairly strong but steady from the south. At times, the airplane had almost no groundspeed because of the winds. The witness watched the airplane until it went out of his sight behind a T-hangar. Shortly thereafter, the witness was traveling to his hangar with a friend, and had passed the east side of another T-hangar. The witness then saw the airplane appear into view from the north side of the T-hangars, in a slight left wing down descending turn, but in an approximate 45-degree dive. The wings leveled but the dive continued until the airplane impacted the ground.

According to a Federal Aviation Administration inspector, the airplane had impacted the ground in a nose down attitude. Initial examination of the fuel tanks found no fuel, nor was there a fuel odor in the vicinity of the airplane. The airplane was moved to a secure location on the airport for further examination.

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