This October 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: Super Sky Raider. Injuries: None. Location: Tuscola, Illinois. Aircraft damage: Substantial.
What reportedly happened: The pilot had not flown between 1981 and August 2008. Prior to the accident, he logged one hour in the tailwheel-equipped airplane with an instructor pilot. The accident flight was the pilot’s first solo flight in the accident airplane.
The pilot reported that as he was attempting to takeoff from the unpaved runway the aircraft began to veer to the right. He applied hard left rudder pedal, but the airplane continued to the right and went off the runway and into a cornfield. The airplane was equipped with heel brakes on the bottom of the rudder pedals. The inspection of the airplane revealed that the rudder and the right brake were operating normally. The left brake could not be tested because of damage to the airplane.
Probable cause: The pilot failed to maintain directional control during takeoff roll. A contributing factor was the cornfield and the pilot’s lack of recent experience.
For more information: NTSB.gov