Aviation Accident Summaries

Aviation Accident Summary IAD01LA023


Aircraft #1


Cessna 172S


The pilot made a normal approach to the 2,942 foot long and 40 foot wide runway at night, but landed to the left of the runway centerline. The left main gear touched down on the edge of the runway, and the left landing gear landed in a bank of plowed snow. The airplane veered to the left, traveled deeper into the snow, and flipped over. The pilot reported that there were no mechanical deficiencies, and stated that he "messed up" the landing.

Factual Information

On January 7, 2001, at 1730 Eastern Standard Time, a Cessna 172S, N699LP, was substantially damaged during landing at Lincoln Park Airport (N07), Lincoln Park, New Jersey. The certificated private pilot and passenger were not injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed for the flight that originated at Sky Acres Airport (44N), Millbrook, New York, at 1645. No flight plan was filed for the personal flight conducted under 14 CFR Part 91. In a written statement, the pilot said: "Left 44N approximately 4:45, weather was VFR. Returned to N07 pattern at dark and heard another aircraft in pattern. Runway lights were on. On final approach all was well. Just before touching down I felt I was too slow and landed approximately 1 foot off runway to left. The wheel landed in a snow bank. I accelerated to overcome the pulling of the snow and the plane swerved to the right and hit a pile of snow at the runway side by a taxiway. The plane then tipped over and we came to a stop. I shut down the systems and evacuated the plane. No one was injured or involved in the accident." A Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) inspector interviewed the pilot. According to the inspector's record of conversation: "Pilot stated that he and his passenger [name] were returning to Lincoln Park Airport from Sky Acres airport in New York. The time of arrival over Lincoln Park was after dark at approximately 1730 local. A normal approach to Runway 19 was made. The touch down was to the left of the runway, the left wheel encountered some piled snow from the snow removal operation. The airplane immediately veered to the left and got deeper into the snow bank. After traveling another 200 feet or so it went over on its back. The pilot and the passenger exited the airplane with no injuries." The inspector also reported that the pilot was qualified for night flight operations, and had executed night landings on several occasions. The pilot also stated several times that he "messed up" the landing. The FAA inspector examined the airplane at the accident scene. According to the inspector, the airplane sustained substantial damage to the rudder, and the propeller exhibited impact damage. Control continuity was established for all flight control surfaces except the rudder, due to impact damage. The landing gear and brakes were also examined, and there were no mechanical discrepancies. The asphalt runway was 2,942-feet long and 40-feet wide. The pilot reported a total of 383 flight hours, all in make and model, of which 31.5 hours were at night. The pilot also reported that there were no mechanical deficiencies.

Probable Cause and Findings

the pilot's failure to maintain proper runway alignment during landing. Factors in the accident were the night lighting and the snow bank.


Source: NTSB Aviation Accident Database

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