March 19, 2011, Ocean Springs, Miss., Piper PA-28-140


At about 1410 Central time, the airplane was substantially damaged during a forced landing after takeoff. The airline transport pilot and two passengers sustained minor injuries; the third passenger was seriously injured. Visual conditions prevailed.

The pilot later stated he flew the 12-mile distance from the airplanes base to pick up the three passengers and consumed “about an hours worth of fuel” while en route. He boarded the passengers, loaded approximately 40 pounds of luggage, and completed the engine start, run-up, taxi and takeoff roll with no anomalies noted. At 80 to 100 feet above the runway, the airplane “would not climb.” At that time, the pilot perceived engine power had decayed from 2300 rpm to about 2000 rpm. The pilot verified the engine controls and responded to continuous stall warnings by “lowering the nose,” which resulted in a steady loss of altitude. He then selected a narrow street in a residential area for a forced landing. The airplane departed with 36 gallons of fuel on board and, according to the responding sheriffs department, the combined weight of the occupants was 735 pounds.


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