This April 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 152. Injuries: None. Location: El Cajon, Calif. Aircraft damage: Substantial.
What reportedly happened: The student was on a solo flight to practice touch-and-go landings. The first six were successful. During the seventh approach, the winds shifted and started to gust. The student was able to maintain 55 knots as he came over the approach end of the runway, but then the airplane suddenly drifted to the left. The student tried to correct using ailerons. The airplane touched down hard and bounced. When the airplane came to a stop, the student noticed the airplane was on fire. He exited the airplane.
Probable cause: The student pilot’s inadequate compensation for gusty, crosswind conditions, and failure to maintain an adequate airspeed.
For more information: NTSB.gov