Thursday, March 08, 2018

Hard Landing: Cessna 172R, N2221R; accident occurred March 07, 2018 at Lakeland Linder Regional Airport (KLAL), Polk County, Florida

Additional Participating Entity:
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Orlando, Florida

Aviation Accident Final Report - National Transportation Safety Board:

Investigation Docket - National Transportation Safety Board:

Location: Lakeland, FL
Accident Number: GAA18CA151
Date & Time: 03/07/2018, 0930 EST
Registration: N2221R
Aircraft: CESSNA 172
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Hard landing
Injuries: 1 None
Flight Conducted Under:  Part 91: General Aviation - Instructional 


The solo student pilot reported that during the approach, the "winds got very powerful". He added that, the winds were "too strong and out of [his] capacity and personal minimums". During the landing, the airplane landed flat and bounced a couple of times. He then taxied to park without further incident.

The airplane sustained substantial damage to the fuselage.

The student reported that there were no preaccident mechanical failures or malfunctions with the airplane that would have precluded normal operation.

The automated weather observation system about 2 nautical miles from the accident site reported, that about the time of the accident, the wind was from 340° at 9 knots, gusting to 15 knots. The student pilot landed on runway 27. 

Probable Cause and Findings

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be:
The student pilot's improper landing flare in gusting crosswind conditions, which resulted in a bounced landing.


Landing flare - Not attained/maintained (Cause)

Personnel issues
Aircraft control - Student pilot (Cause)

Environmental issues
Crosswind - Effect on operation
Gusts - Effect on operation

Factual Information

History of Flight

Approach-VFR pattern final
Other weather encounter


Abnormal runway contact (Defining event)

Student Pilot Information

Certificate: Student
Age: 18, Male
Airplane Rating(s): None
Seat Occupied: Left
Other Aircraft Rating(s): None
Restraint Used: Unknown
Instrument Rating(s): None
Second Pilot Present: No
Instructor Rating(s): None
Toxicology Performed: No
Medical Certification: Class 2 With Waivers/Limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: 09/14/2017
Occupational Pilot: No
Last Flight Review or Equivalent:
Flight Time:  (Estimated) 69.5 hours (Total, all aircraft), 69.5 hours (Total, this make and model), 7.6 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft), 43.9 hours (Last 90 days, all aircraft), 37.3 hours (Last 30 days, all aircraft) 

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Manufacturer: CESSNA
Registration: N2221R
Model/Series: 172 R
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 1998
Amateur Built: No
Airworthiness Certificate: Normal; Utility
Serial Number: 17280681
Landing Gear Type: Tricycle
Seats: 4
Date/Type of Last Inspection: 03/05/2018, 100 Hour
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 2457 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection:
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 8326.2 Hours at time of accident
Engine Manufacturer: LYCOMING
ELT: C91  installed, not activated
Engine Model/Series: IO-360-L2A
Rated Power: 180 hp
Operator: International Aero Academy
Operating Certificate(s) Held: Pilot School (141) 

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: Visual Conditions
Condition of Light: Day
Observation Facility, Elevation: KLAL, 142 ft msl
Observation Time: 1449 UTC
Distance from Accident Site: 2 Nautical Miles
Direction from Accident Site: 294°
Lowest Cloud Condition:  
Temperature/Dew Point: 19°C / 4°C
Lowest Ceiling: Broken / 8000 ft agl
Visibility:  10 Miles
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: 9 knots/ 15 knots, 340°
Visibility (RVR):
Altimeter Setting: 30.02 inches Hg
Visibility (RVV):
Precipitation and Obscuration:  No Obscuration; No Precipitation
Departure Point: Lakeland, FL (LAL)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Destination: Lakeland, FL (LAL)
Type of Clearance: VFR
Departure Time: 0850 EST
Type of Airspace: Class D

Airport Information

Runway Surface Type: Asphalt
Airport Elevation: 142 ft
Runway Surface Condition: Dry
Runway Used: 27
IFR Approach: None
Runway Length/Width: 8499 ft / 150 ft
VFR Approach/Landing: Full Stop 

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries:  1 None
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 1 None
Latitude, Longitude:  27.988056, -82.019722 (est)

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