January 4, 2005, Clewiston, Fla. / Cessna 172SP


At about 1315 Eastern time the airplane veered off the runway while landing. Visual conditions prevailed; there were no injuries among the Private-rated pilot-in-command and the CFI, although the airplane was substantially damaged. According to the pilot, he had not flown for a couple of weeks and asked the instructor to accompany him. While on short final, the aircraft yawed to the left due to a strong crosswind and the pilot said he was unable to make the corrections needed to land straight. During the landing roll-out, the left main gear departed the runway surface and the flight instructor took control of the aircraft, adding full power. The aircraft lifted off slightly, turned abruptly to the right, departed the runway at a 45-degree angle, struck a runway distance marker and settled once again on its landing gear prior to hitting a ditch.


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