This August 2009 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: Rans S12. Injuries: 1 Minor. Location: Quitman, Ga. Aircraft damage: Substantial.
What reportedly happened: The pilot was attempting to land during the day in VFR conditions. On the final leg of the traffic pattern he descended into trees.
Neither the pilot nor a FAA inspector, who examined the airplane after the accident, reported any pre-existing malfunctions or mechanical anomalies. The nearest weather reporting facility, located about 16 nautical miles east of the accident, reported calm winds, 10 statute miles visibility, and few clouds at 1,100 feet at the time of the accident.
Probable cause: The pilot’s failure to maintain obstacle clearance on final approach.
For more information: NTSB.gov NTSB Identification: ERA09CA442