Bad landing, bad news for student pilot

Aircraft: Cessna 172. Injuries: None. Location: Lebanon, Tenn. Aircraft damage: Substantial.

What reportedly happened: The student pilot was practicing takeoffs and landings. After the third landing he thought the airplane’s left main tire felt flat, so he taxied back to the FBO to have the tire checked.

The FBO representative found no discrepancies and the pilot taxied back to the runway to continue the flight.

During takeoff, as the airplane reached about 30 knots, it began to bobble on the left side. In response the pilot reduced engine power and applied the brakes. The airplane went off the left side of the runway and came to a stop in a ditch.

Probable cause: The student pilot´s failure to maintain directional control during an aborted takeoff, resulting in a runway excursion.

NTSB Identification: ERA11CA115

This January 2011 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.


  1. Greg C says

    My sentiments exactly. A student pilot is still developing his/her air sense and when or when not to take an aircraft. The FBO should have had the plane’s main gear looked at to ensure no bent wheels, fairings rubbing, bent gear, etc. and not try to get some more dollars on the airframe. Their poor judgement led to losing the revenue producing source for a period. The NTSB should have not probable cause on a STUDENT pilot.

  2. Guido B says

    Another bad story where the real problem was not addressed. What was wrong with the plane that he tried to get an experienced professional to look at? They let him down, the plane fails and it’s pilot error?

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