Saturday, September 12, 2020

Hard Landing: Cessna 172M Skyhawk, N19813; accident occurred September 07, 2020 at New Castle Airport (KILG), Wilmington, Delaware

Aviation Accident Final Report - National Transportation Safety Board
Additional Participating Entity: 
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 

Location: Wilmington, Delaware
Accident Number: ERA20CA318
Date & Time: September 7, 2020, 15:42 Local
Registration: N19813
Aircraft: Cessna 172
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Hard landing
Injuries: 1 None
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General aviation - Instructional


The student pilot was conducting his first solo cross country flight. During the landing flare at the destination airport, he reduced engine power, and the airplane touched down “firmly” then bounced back into the air. It bounced 3 to 4 more times before it came to rest on the runway. The pilot also stated that “each bounce and touch down were worse... than the previous.” Subsequently, he taxied the airplane to a hangar and egressed without issue. After the accident, an examination of the airframe found that the fuselage was substantially damaged. The pilot reported no preimpact mechanical malfunctions or failures 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 improper landing flare, which resulted in a hard bounced landing.


Aircraft Landing flare - Not attained/maintained
Personnel issues Aircraft control - Pilot

Factual Information

History of Flight

Landing Hard landing (Defining event)

Pilot Information

Certificate: Student 
Age: 29, 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:
Medical Certification: Class 1 
Last FAA Medical Exam: August 27, 2019
Occupational Pilot: No 
Last Flight Review or Equivalent:
Flight Time: 74 hours (Total, all aircraft), 61 hours (Total, this make and model), 5 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft), 29 hours (Last 90 days, all aircraft), 11 hours (Last 30 days, all aircraft)

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Cessna
Registration: N19813
Model/Series: 172 M 
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 1972 
Amateur Built:
Airworthiness Certificate: Normal
Serial Number: 17260776
Landing Gear Type: Tricycle 
Seats: 4
Date/Type of Last Inspection: January 29, 2020 Annual 
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 2299 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection: 
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 6710.7 Hrs at time of accident
Engine Manufacturer: Lycoming
ELT: Installed, not activated 
Engine Model/Series: O-360-A4M
Registered Owner: 
Rated Power: 180 Horsepower
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: Visual (VMC) 
Condition of Light: Day
Observation Facility, Elevation: ILG,80 ft msl 
Distance from Accident Site: 0 Nautical Miles
Observation Time: 14:51 Local 
Direction from Accident Site:
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Visibility: 10 miles
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility (RVR):
Wind Speed/Gusts: 6 knots / 
Turbulence Type Forecast/Actual:  /
Wind Direction: 150°
Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual:  /
Altimeter Setting: 30.17 inches Hg
Temperature/Dew Point: 27°C / 15°C
Precipitation and Obscuration: No Obscuration; No Precipitation
Departure Point: Wildwood, NJ (WWD)
Type of Flight Plan Filed:
Destination: Wilmington, DE
Type of Clearance: None
Departure Time: 04:40 Local 
Type of Airspace: Class D

Airport Information

Airport: New Castle Airport ILG
Runway Surface Type: Asphalt
Airport Elevation: 80 ft msl 
Runway Surface Condition: Dry
Runway Used: 19 
IFR Approach: None
Runway Length/Width: 7012 ft / 150 ft
VFR Approach/Landing: Full stop

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 None
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries:
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: 
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 1 None 
Latitude, Longitude: 39.67652,-75.603042 (est)

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