NTSB Identification: LAX95LA181.
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Accident occurred Sunday, May 07, 1995 in COLUSA, CA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 11/06/1995
Aircraft: CESSNA 172A, registration: N7358T
Injuries: 2 Minor.

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

THE PILOT STATED THAT HE WAS ON A SOUTHEASTERLY HEADING WHEN THE AIRCRAFT CRASHED INTO A FLOODED RICE FIELD. HE STATED THAT THE ENGINE WAS OPERATING NORMALLY AT THE TIME OF THE ACCIDENT. HE ALSO SAID THAT HE ONLY FLIES ABOUT SIX TIMES A YEAR AND THAT HE WAS SIMPLY NOT ACCUSTOMED TO FLYING AT SUCH A LOW ALTITUDE AND HAD INADERTENTLY FLOWN THE AIRCRAFT INTO THE GLASSY WATER OF THE FLOODED FIELD.

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

the pilot's selection of an inadequate en route cruise altitude for the aerial observation flight, and his failure to identify and stop an inadvertent descent while flying over flooded terrain at a very low altitude. Lack of pilot experience in low level operations and glassy water were factors in this accident.

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