NTSB Identification: FTW99FA121.
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Accident occurred Wednesday, April 21, 1999 in BLANCO, TX
Probable Cause Approval Date: 06/21/2000
Aircraft: Cessna 182G, registration: N2330R
Injuries: 1 Fatal.

NTSB investigators either traveled in support of this investigation or conducted a significant amount of investigative work without any travel, and used data obtained from various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

The non-instrument rated private pilot failed to maintain clearance with terrain during a dark night, instrument meteorological conditions, flight. Witnesses near the accident site reported observing the airplane flying 'extremely low' from the northwest toward the southeast. The witnesses added that the airplane turned toward the south, then disappeared behind a hill. All but one of the witnesses stated that they heard a constant engine noise, which became 'muffled' when the airplane went behind the hill. They reported hearing the sound of the airplane impacting the ground and then seeing the first signs of a fire. The witnesses added that the airplane remained below the 'low' clouds and that a light drizzle was falling. According to area weather observations, the cloud bases near the accident site were approximately 800 feet above the ground. The pilot had accumulated 9.2 hours of simulated instrument flight and 55.4 hours of night flying experience at the time of the accident. Examination of the airframe and engine revealed no anomalies that would have prevented normal operation.

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be:

The pilot's continued flight into adverse weather conditions and his failure to maintain clearance with terrain. Factors were, the low cloud and drizzle weather conditions, and the dark night light conditions.

Full narrative available

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