The aircraft was taking off for a singleton aerobatic training sortie. The first part of the takeoff was uneventful but, at a height of about 50 ft and at a speed of 80 kt, the cockpit canopy suddenly opened. The canopy is a large transparency incorporating the windscreen, hinged on the right and it broke upon contact with the right wing, leaving the frame attached but fully open.
The pilot immediately aborted the takeoff, cut power and landed back on the runway where he shut the aircraft down and vacated it. He concluded that, although he believed that he had performed his pre-flight checks thoroughly, he must have omitted to lock the canopy properly.
Published 10 December 2014