Duck-under syndrome kills three

Aircraft: Piper Aztec. Injuries: 3 Fatal, 1 Serious. Location: Charlotte Amalie, Va. Aircraft damage: Destroyed.

What reportedly happened: There was no record of the pilot obtaining a weather briefing before the flight or filing a flight plan. The destination airport was tower-controlled, but the tower was closed at the time of the accident. The runway was located along the shore, with the approach end surrounded by water on three sides.

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Night flight ends in fatal crash

Aircraft: Piper Warrior. Injuries: 1 Fatal. Location: Marana, Ariz. Aircraft damage: Destroyed.

What reportedly happened: The non-instrument-rated pilot had amassed an estimated 185 hours of total flight experience, of which 7.3 hours were conducted at night over sparsely populated terrain. He had flown the route twice before in the day time.

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Misrigged airplane crashes

Aircraft: Kitfox Super Sport. Injuries: None. Location: Twin Bridges, Mont. Aircraft damage: Substantial.

What reportedly happened: The pilot purchased the airplane from the builder approximately four months before the accident. At the time of the accident, the pilot had logged about 16 hours in the Kitfox. The accident happened when he attempted to perform a full-flap soft-field takeoff for the first time.

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Brush interferes with takeoff

Aircraft: Piper Super Cub. Injuries: None. Location: Cordova, Alaska. Aircraft damage: Substantial.

What reportedly happened: The pilot was departing from a tidal beach in the tailwheel airplane. During the takeoff roll into the sun he lost visual references and allowed the airplane to drift to the right.

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Precautionary landing goes bad

Aircraft: Swift GC-1A. Injuries: 2 Fatal. Location: East Moriches, N.Y. Aircraft damage: Destroyed.

What reportedly happened: The airplane departed with an adequate supply of fuel in the main fuel tank but an unknown amount in the tip tanks. The Swift’s takeoff was witnessed by the mechanic who performed the last inspection on the airplane. The mechanic thought the engine sounded unusual and thought the pilot would return for landing, but he did not.

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Wind puts Cessna in ditch

Aircraft: Cessna 150. Injuries: None. Location: Seneca Falls, N.Y. Aircraft damage: Substantial.

What reportedly happened: The pilot did not obtain a preflight weather briefing before departing on the local flight. At the time of departure the wind was from 270° at 9 knots.

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Takeoff ends in trees

Aircraft: Cessna 150. Injuries: None. Location: Mansfield, Mass. Aircraft damage: Substantial.

What reportedly happened: The accident happened during a training flight. According to the flight instructor, during climb out when the airplane reached 250 feet AGL, the airplane stopped climbing and began to descend.

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Carb icing at night for Cherokee

Aircraft: Piper Cherokee. Injuries: 2 Fatal. Location: Maryland Heights, Mo. Aircraft damage: Destroyed.

What reportedly happened: A witness, who saw the airplane approaching the airport for a night landing, remarked that the engine sounded like it was sputtering. He thought the pilot was attempting to land on the beach of a nearby lake. The airplane hit the water and cartwheeled before sinking.

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Pilot gets behind airplane

Aircraft: Beech Bonanza. Injuries: 1 Serious. Location: Wausau, Wis. Aircraft damage: Substantial.

What reportedly happened: The pilot was attempting an instrument approach. The airport’s weather system was reporting conditions below approach minimums. The pilot chose to attempt the approach and, if necessary, execute a missed approach and hold until conditions improved.

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Insects bring down Tomahawk

Aircraft: Piper Tomahawk. Injuries: 1 Minor. Location: Corona, Calif. Aircraft damage: Substantial.

What reportedly happened: After flying for about an hour, the pilot entered the pattern to land. During the approach the engine lost power. Unable to restart the engine, or make it to the runway, he performed a forced landing into an adjacent field, where the airplane sustained substantial damage.

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