NTSB Identification: LAX95LA211.
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Accident occurred Saturday, June 17, 1995 in PASO ROBLES, CA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 02/08/1996
Aircraft: HARMON DOLPHIN, registration: N89JH
Injuries: 1 Fatal.

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 ACCIDENT AIRPLANE WAS ONE OF TWO AIRCRAFT THAT WERE FLYING TOGETHER TO PASO ROBLES MUNICIPAL AIRPORT. THE WEATHER AT THE AIRPORT WAS REPORTED AS A 600-FOOT CEILING WITH 3 MILES VISIBILITY IN FOG. THE PILOT OF THE SECOND AIRPLANE WAS IN COMMUNICATIONS WITH THE ACCIDENT AIRPLANE. ACCORDING TO THE PILOT OF THE SECOND AIRPLANE, THE PILOT OF THE ACCIDENT AIRPLANE HAD DESCENDED INTO THE TOP OF THE FOG. THE SECOND AIRPLANE PILOT ASKED THE ACCIDENT PILOT WHERE HE WAS. THE ACCIDENT PILOT STATED, 'I DON'T KNOW WHERE I AM.' THERE WERE NO FURTHER RADIO TRANSMISSIONS HEARD FROM THE ACCIDENT PILOT. THE AIRCRAFT CRASHED ABOUT 1 MILE FROM THE AIRPORT. THE OUTBOARD 4 FEET OF THE LEFT WING WAS FOUND ABOUT 150 FEET FROM THE MAIN WRECKAGE. AN EXAM OF THE WING FRACTURES REVEALED EVIDENCE THAT THE OUTBOARD PORTION OF THE WING HAD SEPARATED IN AN UPWARD AND AFT DIRECTION. THE PILOT WAS NOT INSTRUMENT RATED.

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

THE PILOT'S DECISION CONTINUE VFR FLIGHT INTO INSTRUMENT METEOROLOGICAL CONDITIONS (IMC), LOSS OF AIRCRAFT CONTROL DUE TO SPATIAL DISORIENTATION, AND EXCEEDING THE DESIGN STRESS LIMITS OF THE AIRPLANE. THE WEATHER CONDITION WAS A RELATED FACTOR.

Full narrative available

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