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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 134087
Last updated: 6 August 2020
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Type:Silhouette image of generic C150 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Cessna 150H
Owner/operator:Michael G. Gorman
Registration: N788JG
C/n / msn: 15067748
Fatalities:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 2
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location:Minden, NV -   United States of America
Phase: Unknown
Departure airport:O43
Destination airport:MEV
Investigating agency: NTSB
On August 28, 1996, about 1130 hours Pacific daylight time, a Cessna 150H, N788JG, en route from Yerington, Nevada, to Douglas County Airport in Minden, Nevada, impacted mountainous terrain and burned after encountering downdrafts in the vicinity of the Sunrise Pass. The aircraft was destroyed and the commercial pilot and one passenger received serious injuries. Visual flight conditions prevailed for the personal flight.

The flight was reported missing to the Nevada Office of Emergency Management at 0745 on the morning of August 29th. The aircraft was located by an airborne search and rescue unit of the Douglas County Sheriff's Office about 0845 and a rescue helicopter was dispatched to the area, reaching the crash site about 1000.

Minden is about 28 miles west of Yerington, and the pilot reported that his passenger, a private pilot, was flying the aircraft as they proceeded westbound and approached Sunrise Pass in the Pine Nut mountains, which lies between the two cities. The elevation in Sunrise Pass is approximately 7,200 feet. As they approached the pass at 8,200 feet msl, they encountered what the pilot described as a "severe downdraft," and the passenger/pilot attempted to maintain altitude but was unable to do so. When the aircraft was low over terrain (below power line height), the passenger asked the pilot to take control of the aircraft. The pilot made a turn to the north along a ridge line anticipating that there would be an updraft; however, the downdraft continued. The pilot saw a meadow to the south and elected to land in it. He recalled starting a left turn toward the meadow and his next recollection is of regaining consciousness, being upside down in the aircraft, and there being a fire in front of the firewall. The pilot was able to extricate himself and his unconscious passenger from the aircraft before the fire reached the cabin area. He told rescuers that the aircraft had been operating fine and that they had departed Yerington with about 10 gallons of fuel.

According to an investigator from Cessna Aircraft Company, the aircraft crossed some low power lines and impacted a tree about 20 feet above the base. It then continued forward on a 340-degree course about 75 feet into a manzanita bush and flipped inverted. The forward portion of the aircraft fuselage along with the inboard sections of both wings were involved in a postcrash fire. The emergency locator transmitter (ELT) was destroyed in the fire.

The elevation at the accident site is 7,400 feet, and the temperature was estimated by rescue personnel to have been about 88 degrees Fahrenheit at the time of the accident. The density altitude was computed to be approximately 11,000 feet.

In his written report, the pilot stated that here were no preimpact mechanical malfunctions or failures of the aircraft.
PROBABLE CAUSE:the pilot's delayed remedial action when encountering downdrafts while approaching high terrain in high density altitude conditions. The pilot's inadequate supervision of the second pilot was a factor in the accident.


NTSB id 20001208X06562

Revision history:

21-Dec-2016 19:26 ASN Update Bot Updated [Time, Damage, Category, Investigating agency]

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