First solo, first incident

This February 2010 accident report is provided by the National Transportation Safety Board. Published as an educational tool, it is intended to help pilots learn from the misfortunes of others.

Aircraft: Flight Design CTLS. Injuries: None. Location: Fort Myers, Fla. Aircraft damage: Substantial.

What reportedly happened: Once cleared for his first solo by his CFI, the student pilot listened to the ATIS, which indicated the wind was from 320° at 10 knots. He taxied to runway 31. He began the takeoff roll and felt that the airplane was being pushed from the left.

He corrected with rudder input, and the airplane veered to the right. He applied left rudder input again, and the airplane went off the runway, hit a runway sign and nosed over.

Probable cause: The student pilot’s failure to maintain directional control during takeoff.

For more information: NTSB Identification: ERA10CA137


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