Ground loop for Piper

Aircraft: Piper Clipper. Injuries: None. Location: Muskegan, Mich. Aircraft damage: Substantial.

What reportedly happened: The pilot was accompanied by a flight instructor. During the attempted takeoff, the tailwheel-equipped airplane veered and ground looped toward the right, then nosed over.

The pilot stated that he did not apply left rudder soon enough to avoid the loss of directional control.

The flight instructor stated that when the airplane began to veer he attempted to apply corrective control input, but the pilot was applying opposite control input and did not reduce engine power as he was instructed.

Probable cause: The pilot’s loss of directional control during the takeoff roll and the flight instructor’s inability to apply remedial action due to the opposite corrective control inputs by the pilot.

NTSB Identification: CEN11LA642

This September 2011 accident report is provided by the National Transportation Safety Board. Published as an educational tool, it isintended to help pilots learn from the misfortunes of others.


  1. Vaughn S. Price says

    I have a few hours in clipper, Pacer, and vagabond, the take off tendency is to the left.
    I would deeply question the ability of the instructor to teach

  2. says

    This is what we use to call “a short coupled airplane” – on less you KNOW how to use your feet (rudders) – well,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,, had a few hours of dual in one here at (1N7)
    Blairstown, NJ back in 58-59 – keeps one “on their toes” – pun intended!

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