Aircraft: Piper Cherokee. Injuries: None. Location: Marysville, Tenn. Aircraft damage: Substantial.
What reportedly happened: The pilot was attempting to takeoff from his private airstrip. Despite the application of full power, the airplane did not climb at a normal rate, and he was unable to avoid trees at the end of the grass runway.
The left wing and landing gear collided with the trees then crashed, coming to rest inverted.
After the accident, the pilot told investigators that he did not complete performance planning calculations prior to takeoff.
Probable cause: The pilot’s failure to plan and execute a takeoff that assured obstacle clearance at the departure end of the runway, which resulted in a collision with trees.
NTSB Identification: ERA12CA585
This August 2012 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.