Eden Prairie, Minnesota/Injuries: 2
When the pilot attempted to start the engine, the starter motor turned, but the starter did not engage. The pilot said he turned off the battery master switch, exited the airplane, and walked around to the front of the airplane. He reached through the door and thought the ignition key was off. He pushed the propeller down through one compression stroke. The engine immediately started. The pilot jumped on the left wing, but fell off. The airplane traveled across the ramp and struck a ditch between runways 28R and 28L, breaking off the nose gear and buckling the firewall. Postaccident examination disclosed the ignition switch functioned normally.
Probable Cause(s): The pilot’s failure to ensure the airplane was secured prior to attempting an engine start by handpropping.
Note: The report republished here is from the NTSB and is printed verbatim and in its complete form.