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N701FP accident description

Minnesota map... Minnesota list
Crash location 45.697222°N, 92.952222°W
Nearest city Rush City, MN
45.685514°N, 92.965490°W
1.0 miles away
Tail number N701FP
Accident date 05 May 2016
Aircraft type Airborne Windsports Pty Ltd Edge X Classic
Additional details: None

NTSB Factual Report


On May 8, 2016, about 1025 central daylight time, an Airborne Windsport Edge X Classic weight-shift control aircraft, N701FP, impacted terrain at Rush City Airport (ROS), Rush City, Minnesota. The student pilot, the sole occupant on board, was fatally injured. The aircraft was substantially damaged. The aircraft was registered to and operated by the pilot of Pine City, Minnesota, under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 as a personal flight. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the accident, and no flight plan had been filed. The local flight was originating at the time of the accident.

According to a video provided by the Chisago County Sheriff's Office, the aircraft took off on runway 16, climbed to an estimated altitude of 300 to 400 feet, banked sharply to the left, descended, and impacted terrain in a steep nose-down attitude. The engine could be heard producing power at impact.

Examination of the wreckage revealed no evidence of pre-impact mechanical malfunctions or failures.


The pilot held a student pilot certificate with no solo endorsements. He also held a third class airman medical certificate, dated April 7, 2016, with the restriction, "Must have available glasses for near vision."

Examination of the pilot's flight logbook revealed 13 entries made from March 22, to May 6, 2016. The entries indicated the pilot had logged a total of 21.9 hours – 4.6 hours in a Cessna 172, 3.3 hours in a Cessna 150, and 14.0 in an Air Creation USA ARV TANARG, another weight-shift-control aircraft similar to N701FP. The latter flights occurred at Marana Regional Airport (AVQ), Marana, Arizona, between April 18 and April 20. The accident flight was the first flight the pilot had made in N701FP. He had not flown a weight-shift control aircraft since April 20. He did, however, take a lesson in a Cessna 172 two days before the accident.

A Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) inspector telephoned the pilot's flight instructor in Marana, Arizona. The instructor told the inspector that he did not feel the pilot was ready to solo; therefore, he did not endorse him for solo flight in his pilot logbook. The instructor stated the pilot mismanaged takeoffs and landings, and had the tendency to "leave the bar out" after takeoff "instead of letting it come back," causing the aircraft to increase pitch attitude and climb steeply. The instructor said that control in a weight-shift aircraft differs from that of a conventional airplane. To climb, you push the control bar forward and to descend, you pull back on the control bar. The instructor said this tends to be an issue for new pilots, especially those who are mixing their training between fixed wing airplanes and weight shift control aircraft. The instructor added that there is a considerable difference in the performance of the aircraft with just one person on board in that it will climb at a considerably greater rate when flown solo.


According to the autopsy report, prepared by the Midwest Medical Examiner's Office, death was attributed to "multiple blunt force injuries."

According to FAA's Civil Aeromedical Institute's (CAMI) toxicology report, no carbon monoxide or ethanol were detected in cavity blood or vitreous, respectively. Ranitidine was detected in urine. According to FAA's Forensic Toxicology, ranitidine is an anti-histamine used in the treatment of gastric acid secretion. According to the Midwest Medical Examiner's toxicology report, ranitidine and caffeine were detected in urine.

NTSB Probable Cause

The student pilot's failure to maintain the appropriate pitch attitude during initial climb, which resulted in an aerodynamic stall. Contributing to the accident was the student pilot’s decision to conduct a solo flight without a solo endorsement in an aircraft in which he had no experience flying.

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