Crank Failure In Florida?

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As if to punctuate Lycoming's difficulties, authorities are investigating an incident at St. Augustine Airport in Florida last Tuesday in which the prop on a newer Cessna 172 came off shortly after the aircraft took off. Sources say the aircraft was about 100 feet off the ground when the prop departed. There's no confirmation of what caused the prop to separate or whether there's any link to the crankshaft issues covered by the AD. The pilot, who may have been an instructor with a student, was able to land the aircraft safely on the airport. The operator of the aircraft, Epic Aviation, of New Smyrna Beach, did not immediately return AVweb's phone inquiry. The aircraft is owned by SAL Enterprises LLC, of Port Orange, Fla., and is a 172S model with a certificate date of Sept. 23, 2005.