No rudder leads to lack of control

Aircraft: Cessna 172. Injuries: None. Location: Gaithersburg, Md. Aircraft damage: Substantial.

What reportedly happened: The student pilot, who was attempting to land, made the approach five knots faster than normal because of a headwind.

During the landing flare, the plane encountered a gust of wind, and bounced on the runway. The pilot added power to slow the descent, but the airplane ballooned again with some drift to the left.

He decided to execute a go around. He applied full power but did not add enough rudder to keep the airplane from veering to the left. The airplane went off the runway and the nose gear collapsed.

Probable cause: The student pilot’s inadequate use of the rudder, and subsequent loss of directional control.

NTSB Identification: ERA11CA061

This November 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.

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