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N613LD accident description

Minnesota map... Minnesota list
Crash location 46.721945°N, 92.043333°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 Duluth, MN
46.956324°N, 91.856847°W
18.4 miles away
Tail number N613LD
Accident date 16 Jul 2013
Aircraft type Marino Benoist Type XIV
Additional details: None

NTSB Factual Report

On July 16, 2013, at 1130 central daylight time, an experimental amateur-built Marino model Benoist Type XIV seaplane, N613LD, was substantially damaged when it impacted water shortly after takeoff from Superior Bay near Duluth, Minnesota. The private pilot was not injured. The seaplane was registered to and operated by Duluth Aviation Institute, under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91, without a flight plan. Day visual meteorological conditions prevailed for the local flight test that departed Sky Harbor Airport (KDYT), Duluth, Minnesota, about 1110.

The accident occurred during the first flight since the seaplane was issued an experimental airworthiness certificate on June 27, 2013. The seaplane was a replica of a 100 year old design. The pilot reported that the seaplane had accumulated 3.7 hours of water operations before he attempted the accident flight. Additionally, he stated that there were no anomalies with the seaplane during the two water taxi runs that were completed immediately before the accident takeoff. He reported that his test plan was to achieve liftoff and then fly 1-2 feet above the water for a couple hundred yards before landing.

The pilot stated that during the takeoff run he increased engine power, from 3,000 rpm to 4,000 rpm, after which the seaplane became airborne within a few seconds and unexpectedly entered a high climb angle. He made a pitch reduction, but the seaplane responded quicker than he expected and a pitch increase was subsequently required to avoid a collision with the water. The seaplane ultimately climbed to about 30 feet above the water before the pilot initiated a descent for a landing. The pilot reported that he “could not control the landing” and that the seaplane impacted the water in a nose low and right wing low attitude. The forward fuselage and wings sustained substantial damage during the impact. The pilot extricated himself from the wreckage and was recovered by his support crew following in a chase boat. The pilot reported that there were no mechanical anomalies with the seaplane during the accident flight. In addition, he noted that his overall lack of flight experience in the seaplane contributed to the accident.

At 1134, the KDYT automated surface observing system reported the following weather conditions: wind 090 degrees true at 3 knots, visibility 10 miles, sky clear, temperature 19 degrees Celsius, dew point 17 degrees Celsius, altimeter setting 30.16 inches of mercury.

NTSB Probable Cause

The pilot's failure to maintain control of the seaplane during its initial flight test. Contributing to the accident was the pilot's overall lack of flight experience in the seaplane.

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