On the Record: Cessna 152


Cessna 152

Newnan, Georgia / Injuries: 1 Uninjured

The solo student pilot reported that he was on final approach for a full stop landing when he observed another airplane waiting for the active runway. He intentionally landed long to accommodate the traffic and then "made [the] decision to keep up speed" in order to exit the runway quickly. He misjudged his speed and the airplane departed the right side of the runway, continued across a taxiway, and then down an embankment before nosing over. He later reported that the wheel brakes were less effective because he had full flaps selected. Also, he had applied aft yoke inputs, which minimized the effectiveness of the nose wheel steering system.

A Federal Aviation Administration inspector examined the wreckage and reported that the airplane sustained substantial damage to the fuselage, empennage, and both wings. The pilot reported there were no pre-impact mechanical malfunctions or anomalies that would have precluded normal operation of the airplane.

Probable cause(s): The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be: The student pilot's improper decision to land long and maintain excessive speed during the landing roll. Contributing to the accident was the student pilot's decision to maintain full flaps and aft yoke inputs at a higher speed, reducing his ability to stop the airplane on the runway.

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