NTSB Identification: MIA94FA175.
The docket is stored in the Docket Management System (DMS). Please contact Records Management Division
Accident occurred Friday, July 08, 1994 in GULF OF MEXICO
Probable Cause Approval Date: 04/07/1995
Aircraft: PIPER PA-32-260, registration: N3610W
Injuries: 1 Fatal,3 Serious.

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.

WHILE OVER WATER ABOUT 14 MILES NORTH OF THE DESTINATION, A LOSS OF ENGINE POWER OCCURRED. EMERGENCY PROCEDURES FAILED TO RESTORE ENGINE POWER. BEFORE DITCHING, THE PILOT ADVISED ATC OF HIS POSITION, AND RADAR RETURN AT 100 FEET WAS MARKED ON THE CONTROLLER'S RADAR SCOPE. THE AIRPLANE WAS DITCHED AT SEA, AND THE 4 OCCUPANTS EGRESSED FROM THE SINKING PLANE. THE PILOT REPORTED THAT 3 LIFE PRESERVERS WERE ABOARD THE PLANE, BUT THEY WERE NOT RECOVERED BEFORE THE PLANE SANK (HE HAD NOT BRIEFED THE PASSENGERS ABOUT THE LIFE PRESERVERS BEFORE FLIGHT). ABOUT 3 MINUTES AFTER DITCHING, A COAST GUARD AIRPLANE (WHICH WAS ON A TRAINING MISSION IN THE VICINITY, BUT WAS NOT DROP EQUIPPED) FLEW OVER AND FOUND THE 4 SURVIVORS. A RESCUE BOAT AND HELICOPTER WERE DISPATCHED TO THE AREA, BUT ONE OF THE SURVIVORS DROWNED BEFORE HELP ARRIVED. THE DITCHED AIRPLANE WAS NOT RECOVERED.

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

LOSS OF ENGINE POWER DUE TO AN UNDETERMINED REASON. A FACTOR RELATED TO THE ACCIDENT WAS: INADEQUATE PASSENGER BRIEFING BY THE PILOT.

Full narrative available

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