The airline transport pilot/owner was conducting a personal cross-country flight in the Piper Sport LSA.
The pilot reported that, after the main landing gear touched down at the airport in Mansfield, Ohio, he eased the backpressure on the control stick and that the nose landing gear (NLG) then separated from the airplane.
The airplane slid on the runway.
Post-accident examination of the airplane revealed that the NLG had fractured at a weld area.
An airplane manufacturer service bulletin (SB) called for periodic inspection of the NLG for cracks in the weld area every 25 hours.
The pilot reported that the NLG had accumulated a total time in service of 371 hours at the time of the accident and that it was last inspected 31 flight hours before the accident.
Probable cause: The pilot’s failure to inspect the nose landing gear (NLG), which resulted in a crack going undetected and the subsequent separation of the NLG at the weld area during landing.
NTSB Identification: CEN16LA157
This April 2016 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.