Poor flare for student pilot

Aircraft: Cessna 172. Injuries: None. Location: Richland, Wash. Aircraft damage: Substantial.

What reportedly happened: The student pilot was practicing touch-and-goes. The first two were normal. On the third, the airplane touched down and began to porpoise and wheelbarrow on the nosewheel.

The plane veered to the left and went off the runway, hit a snow berm, and nosed over.

The airplane sustained substantial damage to both wings and the vertical stabilizer.

Probable cause: The student pilot’s improper landing flare and inadequate directional control during landing.

NTSB Identification: WPR12CA079

This January 2012 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. Tom says

    Was it really poor flying technique,
    That caused the airplane to porpoise?
    Or could it have been sleep apnea,
    Of late the FAA’s main purpose.

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