NTSB Identification: CHI96FA048.
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Accident occurred Wednesday, December 06, 1995 in LAUPAHOEHOE, HI
Probable Cause Approval Date: 01/17/1997
Aircraft: Piper PA-23-250, registration: N6687Y
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 pilot planned for an overwater flight of about 13-1/2 hours to arrive at the intended destination at darkness. Initially, the flight was in radio contact with the required hourly position reports. For the last 5 hours of the flight, no radio contact or reports were received although repeated attempts were made by air traffic control. The flight lasted for approximately 15 hours prior to impact 90 nautical miles southeast of the intended destination, in the jungle on the Island of Hawaii. Subsequent examination of the airplane found that the airplane was in cruise flight at the time of the accident, and no mechanical anomalies were found. A post mortem examination of the pilot revealed no evidence of preaccident pathological conditions which would render the pilot incapable of piloting the airplane.

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

the pilot falling asleep at the controls due to fatigue. Factors were: the pilot's inadequate preflight preparation and the dark night.

Full narrative available

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