This February 2008 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.
Aircraft: Cessna 172. Injuries: None. Location: Jenks, Okla. Aircraft damage: Substantial.
What reportedly happened: The pilot was taxiing to a parking spot. He noticed a drainage ditch covered with a metal grate but did not perceive that only a portion of the ditch was covered by the grate. As he maneuvered to park, the nose wheel entered the uncovered ditch and the propeller hit the ground. The pilot shut down the airplane and exited normally. Damage was sustained to the airplane’s firewall. There was no signage to make the pilot aware of the hazard.
Probable cause: The failure of the owner of the parking surface to ensure that the parking surface was clear of hazards to taxiing airplanes and the pilot’s failure to ensure a safe taxi route in unfamiliar surroundings.
For more information: NTSB.gov