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Hard braking cited in airplane wreck report

Sep 18, 2012 - By Martin Reed, Staff Writer

The crop duster was damaged June 3 on a dirt airstrip in the Hidden Valley area.

A pilot's loss of control combined with excessive braking while landing north of Riverton in June caused his crop duster to flip over its nose onto its back, federal investigators announced Sept. 13.

The National Transportation Safety Board issued its probable-cause findings in a report about the crash that happened at about 6 p.m. June 3 on a dry, dirt airstrip in the Hidden Valley area.

The pilot, a 28-year-old man whose name was not disclosed in reports, crashed during the landing on the private runway just before attempting to load chemicals into the plane.

The Fremont County Sheriff's Office at the time of the crash reported that no one was injured. A patrolling deputy on Klocke Road spotted the overturned aircraft on the runway.

According to the National Transportation Safety Board report, the pilot landed the Grumman G-164A single-engine airplane on its main landing gear and lowered the tailwheel to the surface.

The airplane started to veer toward the side of the runway and the pilot could not keep the aircraft from leaving the side of the landing and takeoff surface.

The report stated that "because it was heading toward a big gully, he applied as much braking force as possible. As he applied the braking force, the airplane nosed over onto its back, which resulted in substantial damage to the upper wing and the vertical stabilizer."

The report also stated the pilot reported "no malfunction or anomaly associated with the airplane's directional control system or its braking system."

The sheriff's office reported Sky Aviation of Worland as the aircraft's owner.

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