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N8730E accident description

Maryland map... Maryland list
Crash location 38.600278°N, 77.072778°W
Nearest city Indian Head, MD
38.600119°N, 77.162202°W
4.8 miles away
Tail number N8730E
Accident date 27 Apr 2005
Aircraft type Piper PA-28-140
Additional details: None

NTSB Factual Report

On April 27, 2005, about 1600 eastern daylight time, a Piper PA-28-140, N8730E, was substantially damaged while landing at the Maryland Airport (2W5), Indian Head, Maryland. The certificated private pilot was not injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and no flight plan had been filed for the personal flight that was conducted under 14 CFR Part 91.

The pilot stated that the airplane was on final approach to runway 36, a 3,000-foot-long, 50-foot-wide, asphalt runway, when he experienced a "sudden unexpected descent." He applied full engine power; however, the right wing struck a tree, and the airplane impacted the ground.

Examination of the airplane by a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) inspector did not reveal any pre-impact malfunctions. The inspector noted that the approach end of the runway contained a 50-foot drop off. The airplane impacted the ground about 100 to 150 feet prior to the runway.

The pilot reported 400 hours of total fight experience, which included about 95 hours in the same make and model as the accident airplane.

Winds reported about the time of the accident, at an airport that was located about 10 miles northwest of 2W5, were from 330 degrees at 9 knots, with 14 knot gusts.

NTSB Probable Cause

The pilot's failure to maintain adequate altitude/clearance while on final approach, which resulted in an in-flight collision with trees. A factor in this accident was the gusty wind conditions.

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