Aircraft: Beech F33A. Injuries: 2 Serious, 2 Minor. Location: Tarentum, Penn. Aircraft damage: Substantial.
What reportedly happened: The airplane was one of several involved in a Young Eagles event that day to introduce students to general aviation. According to witnesses, the airplane began its takeoff roll at the approach end of runway 17, which was 3,550 feet long. The airplane swerved as it slowed, and then overran the departure end of the runway and down an embankment. Skid marks began approximately 712 feet prior to the end of the runway.
The pilot declined to be interviewed, and did not provide a written statement. According to FAA records, he had approximately 2,300 total hours of flight experience, of which 1,700 hours were in the same make and model as the accident airplane. This included 12 hours of flight time in the 30 days prior to the accident.
After the accident, weight and balance calculations revealed the estimated weight of the airplane at takeoff was 3,830 pounds, which was 230 pounds above the maximum allowable gross weight. The accelerate/stop distance calculated for the airplane’s takeoff weight was 2,483 feet. Based on the length of the runway and the calculated accelerate/stop distance, the pilot should have been able to abort the takeoff in time to avoid an overrun.
Probable cause: The pilot’s delay in aborting the takeoff, which resulted in a runway overrun. Contributing to the accident was the pilot’s inadequate preflight planning and excessive loading of the airplane.
NTSB Identification: ERA11FA293
This May 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.