Off-airport landing for Cessna 150

Aircraft: Cessna 150. Injuries: None. Location: Maury City, Tenn. Aircraft damage: Substantial.

What reportedly happened: During a local flight at 500 feet AGL and about 10 miles from the departure airport, the pilot reported hearing a “pop” sound from the rear of the airplane.

Concerned about whether further flight was safe, he elected to perform an off-airport precautionary landing. He reduced engine power and attempted to slip the airplane.

He noticed the left rudder pedal would not move and that he could not slip the airplane to the left. The airplane subsequently approached the field higher and faster than he intended and overran the intended landing area.

The post-accident examination revealed that the nose landing gear steering linkage was pulled taut, which restricted movement of the left rudder pedal. The taut nose landing gear steering linkage was likely the result of the accident sequence. After disconnecting the steering linkage, the rudder operated normally in both directions with no other flight control anomalies noted.

Probable cause: The pilot’s failure to attain the proper glide-path during on off-airport landing.

NTSB Identification: ERA11LA203

This March 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. bob says

    so. if he lost rudder control, how is the probable cause pointing at the pilot and not the aircraft inability to perform?

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