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N43860 accident description

Vermont map... Vermont list
Crash location 44.200000°N, 72.500000°W
Nearest city Barre, VT
44.186728°N, 72.481771°W
1.3 miles away
Tail number N43860
Accident date 15 Jul 2002
Aircraft type Cessna 172
Additional details: None

NTSB Factual Report

On July 15, 2002, at 1400 eastern daylight time, a Cessna 172, N43860, was substantially damaged when it collided with terrain during a go-around at a private airstrip in Barre, Vermont. The certificated private pilot/owner was not injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and no flight plan was filed for the flight which originated at Edward F. Knapp State Airport (MPV), Barre/Montpelier, Vermont. The local personal flight was conducted under 14 CFR Part 91.

According to the pilot, as he was returning to Montpelier, he noticed "Bailey Field", a private airstrip, and decided to practice a simulated engine failure landing. He checked the windsock prior to landing; however, there appeared to be a hole in it, and it was not moving. The pilot estimated the winds were from the northwest.

The landing strip was oriented east-west with an uphill incline toward the east. The strip was 1,200 feet long and 50 feet wide, and takeoffs and landings could only be performed to the east.

The pilot performed a circling descent, deployed 40 degrees of flaps, and prepared for a landing to the east. During the landing flare, the airplane was "pushed toward the trees" at the departure end of the runway, by a "quartering tailwind." The pilot initiated a go-around, but the airplane did not have enough airspeed to maintain flight, and it "stalled" into the trees.

The pilot stated there were no mechanical problems with the airplane, and he "made a bad decision." He reported 517 hours of total flight experience, 236 of which were in make and model.

A Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) inspector performed an on-scene examination of the airplane. According to the inspector, the airplane sustained substantial damage to both wings. The inspector did not observe any mechanical anomalies. In addition, the inspector reported that the airstrip was 2,000 feet long and 50 feet wide.

The weather reported at Montpellier, about 3 miles to the west, at 1351, included winds from 260 degrees at 3 knots, 10 miles visibility, scattered clouds at 3,600 feet, temperature 74 degrees Fahrenheit, dew point 63 degrees Fahrenheit, and a barometric pressure of 29.87 inches Hg.

NTSB Probable Cause

The pilot's failure to maintain airspeed during a go-around attempt, which resulted in an inadvertent stall and a subsequent impact with trees. A factor was the pilot's delayed initiation of the go-around.

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