NTSB Identification: BFO95FA033.
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Accident occurred Wednesday, March 15, 1995 in CAMBRIDGE, MD
Probable Cause Approval Date: 11/30/1995
Aircraft: PIPER PA-46-310P, registration: N166CP
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 AIRPLANE COLLIDED WITH TREES SHORTLY AFTER TAKEOFF AND CAME TO REST IN A CHURCH YARD. THERE WERE NO WITNESSES TO THE CRASH; HOWEVER, SEVERAL LOCAL RESIDENTS HEARD THE AIRPLANE OVERFLY THEIR HOMES AT A LOW ALTITUDE. ONE RESIDENT STATED THAT HE HEARD THE AIRPLANE COLLIDE WITH THE TREES. ANOTHER RESIDENT STATED THAT HE HEARD THE ENGINE OPERATING AS THE AIRPLANE FLEW LOW OVERHEAD. BOTH RESIDENTS REPORTED THAT REDUCED VISIBILITY HAMPERED THEIR ABILITY TO FIND THE WRECKAGE. ONE RESIDENT ESTIMATED THAT THE VISIBILITY WAS ABOUT 50 TO 60 FEET. THE PRESCRIBED TAKEOFF MINIMUMS FOR THAT AIRPORT IS 300 FEET AND 1 MILE VISIBILITY. EXAMINATION OF THE AIRPLANE DID NOT DISCLOSE EVIDENCE OF MECHANICAL MALFUNCTION.

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

the commercial/instrument rated pilot's failure to obtain/maintain adequate altitude/clearance during the initial climb after takeoff. Related factors are the pilot's poor planning/decision making, and the fog.

Full narrative available

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