NTSB Identification: LAX95FA103.
The docket is stored in the Docket Management System (DMS). Please contact Records Management Division
Accident occurred Saturday, February 11, 1995 in JAMESTOWN, CA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 08/23/1995
Aircraft: PIPER PA-28-180, registration: CFCNW
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 DAY PRIOR TO THE ACCIDENT, THE PILOT LANDED THE AIRCRAFT ON A HIGHWAY DUE TO A LOW FUEL STATE. THE MORNING OF THE ACCIDENT, HE BOUGHT 10 GALLONS OF FUEL AND WAS GOING TO FLY THE AIRCRAFT TO A NEARBY AIRPORT. ACCORDING TO HIGHWAY PATROL OFFICERS ON THE SITE, WHEN THE PILOT TOOK OFF FROM THE HIGHWAY, THE PREVAILING VISIBILITY OF LESS THAN 1,500 FEET. THE PILOT CIRCLED THE ACCIDENT AREA TWO TIMES BEFORE HE CRASHED ABOUT 0.3 MILE WEST OF THE DEPARTURE AREA. GROUND WITNESSES REPORTED THE ENGINE SOUND ABRUPTLY CUT-OUT FOR ABOUT TWO SECONDS AND THEN WENT TO A HIGH- POWER ENGINE SOUND. THE AIRPLANE CRASHED ABOUT 100 FEET NORTH OF SOME TELEPHONE WIRES. THE POSTACCIDENT WRECKAGE EXAMINATION DISCLOSED EVIDENCE OF HIGH POWER AT IMPACT AND NO EVIDENCE OF ANY PREEXISTING MALFUNCTIONS OR FAILURES.

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

the pilot's intentional flight into IMC conditions and subsequent in-flight loss of control due to spatial disorientation.

Full narrative available

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