NTSB Identification: LAX94LA304.
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Accident occurred Saturday, July 30, 1994 in DEVORE, CA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 11/14/1994
Aircraft: PIPER PA-28-161, registration: N2500Y
Injuries: 1 Uninjured.

NTSB investigators may not have traveled in support of this investigation and used data provided by various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

During cruise flight and within 5 minutes, the pilot's number one radio quit, followed by the number two radio, and then the transponder. He became uncertain about his position and was concerned about decreasing visibility and impending darkness. He began a descent and followed a freeway. He stated that all the right side panel instruments then 'went out,' followed 2 minutes later by all of the left side panel instruments. He flew through a valley, saw the words 'San Bernardino' on a building, and concluded that he was east of track. He saw an airport for a precautionary landing, but thought that the runway was not long enough. He then saw a dirt road near the freeway and choose it instead. He was concerned about stalling, so he added 10 knots to his approach speed. The pilot braked hard to avoid going into an intersection, struck a wooden pole, and veered off the road into a ditch. The operator reported that the alternator had 'gone off-line.'

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

was the failure of the pilot to follow checklist and emergency procedures, which resulted in an improper decision to land on a dirt road within two miles of an airport.

Full narrative available

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