Student Pilot Prang: Down and out in Corsicana

A student pilot on 24 January learned the hard way about the one force of nature that most affects each and every pilot on just about each and every flight – the wind.

After a carefully planning his mission with his instructor, the student pilot departed the Fort Worth Spinks airport (FWS) in Texas in an Aeronca Champ heading for the Corsicana Municipal airport (CRS), also in Texas.

“Nearing CRS, listened to CRS ASOS (automated weather) on radio. Overflew runway and observed windsock indicating 5kt crosswind,” wrote the student pilot in the NTSB report.

“On final entered sideslip to account for crosswind. Touched down on runway and could not maintain track down centreline”

You can guess the rest, which includes statements like “lost directional control” and “panicked” and “hit the brakes”, preludes to a groundloop and noseover.

After finding himself hanging upside down in the harness, he released the seatbelt and exited through the door, in better shape than his little Aeronca.

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