The pilot reported that during the landing approach to the grass runway in Lebanon, Indiana, he had ample time to observe the runway surface and the turf appeared smooth and even.
He continued the approach and executed a soft field landing. While on the landing roll, he noticed a puddle of water ahead.
He commanded full up elevator and attempted to “jump” the puddle, but the Cessna 140 had already slowed below flight speed.
The main landing gear of the tailwheel-equipped airplane hit the standing water that was about 3″ deep, and hidden by the grass. The airplane slowed abruptly and subsequently nosed over, resulting in substantial damage to the vertical tail and right wing strut.
Probable cause: The unseen standing water on the runway that abruptly slowed the tailwheel equipped airplane during landing, resulting in a nose-over.
NTSB Identification: CEN16CA360
This August 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.