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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 138057
Last updated: 14 September 2020
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Type:Silhouette image of generic C172 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Cessna 172M Skyhawk
Owner/operator:Titusville Aeroclub Inc
Registration: N13126
C/n / msn: 17262516
Fatalities:Fatalities: 2 / Occupants: 2
Aircraft damage: Substantial
Location:Stone Bridge House Road, about 0.5 miles of Titusville Apt. - K6G1, PA -   United States of America
Phase: Approach
Departure airport:Willoughby, OH (LNN)
Destination airport:Titusville, PA (6GI)
Investigating agency: NTSB
The instrument-rated flight instructor and student pilot were on a night visual flight rules cross-country flight that included landings at two other airports and a return to the original departure airport. The student pilot had obtained a preflight weather briefing that indicated that some local weather reporting stations were reporting marginal visibilities, likely due to ground fog. A postaccident weather study indicated that the weather conditions were likely to deteriorate further and become instrument meteorological conditions due to ground fog.
Local law enforcement personnel were dispatched to the destination airport after citizens called the emergency operators and reported an airplane was circling the airport. A police officer who was unable to locate the airplane reported that a heavy fog was present and visibility was between 30 to 40 feet. Review of recorded radar data revealed the airplane flew over the destination airport at 2,700 feet above ground level (agl). The last radar return indicated the airplane had descended to 1,500 feet agl about 1 /2 mile south west of the destination airport. The airplane was located in the vicinity of that radar return. The flight instructor and student pilot likely encountered instrument meteorological conditions as they approached their original departure airport; however, they did not contact or request any assistance from air traffic controllers.

Examination of the airplane revealed no preaccident mechanical malfunctions or failures that would have precluded normal operation.
Probable Cause: The flight instructor's improper decision to attempt a visual descent into instrument meteorological conditions while approaching the destination airport, which resulted in an in-flight collision with trees and terrain.



Revision history:

21-Aug-2011 03:46 RobertMB Added
22-Aug-2011 12:43 RobertMB Updated [Aircraft type, Registration, Cn, Operator, Location, Source]
21-Dec-2016 19:26 ASN Update Bot Updated [Time, Damage, Category, Investigating agency]
27-Nov-2017 17:06 ASN Update Bot Updated [Operator, Other fatalities, Departure airport, Destination airport, Source, Narrative]

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