ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 35482
Last updated: 24 May 2013
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Narrative:During his preflight weather briefing the instrument rated pilot was advised that VFR flight was not recommended, and was given several pilot reports for overcast conditions and icing in clouds between 9,000 and 13,000 feet along his route of flight. The pilot told the briefer he had already heard the hazardous weather advisories on the transcribed weather recording. Before departure, the pilot told relatives that he planned to navigate under visual flight rules because of forecast icing in clouds, and intended to remain low to circumnavigate areas of weather. However, in the hour following takeoff, radar data showed the aircraft turning and circling as it climbed approximately on course and eventually reaching 13,700 feet (msl) in proximity of the accident site. The Safety Board Meteorologist determined that, at that location and altitude, the aircraft would likely have been in clouds and conditions favorable for supercooled large droplets (SLD) producing a moderate to severe icing environment. The radar data showed the aircraft maneuvering in the area near the accident site and descending from 13,700 feet to 11,100 feet over 7 minutes, and then descending in a left-hand turn from 11,100 feet to 4,900 feet, where radar contact was lost in 3.4 minutes. The wreckage distribution indicated that the aircraft was in straight and level flight at impact with the mountainside. Area residents reported that the mountains were obscured in low clouds with poor visibility and periods of intense rain. The pilot was wearing a nasal cannula oxygen dispensing device. CAUSE: The pilot's attempted flight into known adverse weather after receiving hazardous weather advisories, which resulted in inadvertent flight into instrument meteorological conditions while attempting to maintain VFR conditions on top. The subsequent accumulation of structural icing required an emergency descent into conditions of low cloud ceilings and obscured mountains.
|C/n / msn:|| 18258624|
|Fatalities:||Fatalities: 2 / Occupants: 2|
|Airplane damage:|| Written off (damaged beyond repair)|
|Location:||Coulterville, CA -
United States of America
|Departure airport:||Fresno, CA (FAT)|
|Destination airport:||Red Bluff, CA (RBL)|
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