Sunday, May 05, 2019

Loss of Control on Ground: Cessna 172K Skyhawk, N78239; accident occurred October 05, 2018 at Stockton Metropolitan Airport (KSCK), San Joaquin County, California

Additional Participating Entity:
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Oakland, California

Aviation Accident Final Report - National Transportation Safety Board:

Investigation Docket - National Transportation Safety Board:

Location: Stockton, CA
Accident Number: GAA19CA014
Date & Time: 10/05/2018, 1145 PDT
Registration: N78239
Aircraft: Cessna 172
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Loss of control on ground
Injuries: 1 None
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Instructional 


The solo student pilot reported that, during departure and before rotation, the airplane veered left, and he applied opposite rudder, but the airplane impacted a taxiway sign. The nose landing gear separated from the firewall, and the airplane exited the runway to the left and came to rest upright in a field adjacent to the runway. 

The airplane sustained substantial damage to the firewall structural plate and the lower firewall flange. 

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

Probable Cause and Findings

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be:
The student pilot's failure to maintain directional control during takeoff. 


Directional control - Not attained/maintained (Cause)
TE flap control system - Incorrect use/operation

Personnel issues
Aircraft control - Student pilot (Cause)
Knowledge of equipment - Student pilot

Factual Information

History of Flight

Loss of control on ground (Defining event)
Attempted remediation/recovery
Collision with terr/obj (non-CFIT)
Part(s) separation from AC

Runway excursion

Student Pilot Information

Certificate: Student
Age: 27, Male
Airplane Rating(s): None
Seat Occupied: Left
Other Aircraft Rating(s): None
Restraint Used: Lap Only
Instrument Rating(s): None
Second Pilot Present: No
Instructor Rating(s): None
Toxicology Performed: No
Medical Certification: Class 1 With Waivers/Limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: 03/20/2018
Occupational Pilot: No
Last Flight Review or Equivalent:
Flight Time:  (Estimated) 47.7 hours (Total, all aircraft), 19.2 hours (Total, this make and model), 33.9 hours (Last 90 days, all aircraft), 11.9 hours (Last 30 days, all aircraft), 3.3 hours (Last 24 hours, all aircraft)

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Cessna
Registration: N78239
Model/Series: 172 K
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 1968
Amateur Built: No
Airworthiness Certificate: Normal
Serial Number: 17257540
Landing Gear Type: Tricycle
Seats: 4
Date/Type of Last Inspection: 09/21/2018, 100 Hour
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 2299 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection:
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 5442.2 Hours as of last inspection
Engine Manufacturer: Lycoming
ELT: C91A installed, not activated
Engine Model/Series: O-320 ED2
Registered Owner: Jc Air Academy Inc
Rated Power: 160 hp
Operator: Jc Air Academy Inc
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: KSCK, 27 ft msl
Distance from Accident Site: 1 Nautical Miles
Observation Time: 1855 UTC
Direction from Accident Site: 118°
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Visibility:  10 Miles
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility (RVR):
Wind Speed/Gusts: Light and Variable /
Turbulence Type Forecast/Actual: None / None
Wind Direction: Variable
Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual: N/A / N/A
Altimeter Setting: 30.06 inches Hg
Temperature/Dew Point: 21°C / 14°C
Precipitation and Obscuration: No Obscuration; No Precipitation
Departure Point: Stockton, CA (SCK)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Destination: Stockton, CA (SCK)
Type of Clearance: VFR
Departure Time: 1100 PDT
Type of Airspace: Class D

Airport Information

Runway Surface Type: Asphalt
Airport Elevation: 33 ft
Runway Surface Condition: Dry
Runway Used: 29L
IFR Approach: None
Runway Length/Width: 4448 ft / 75 ft
VFR Approach/Landing: Full Stop; Traffic Pattern

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: 37.894167, -121.238333 (est)

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