NTSB Identification: NYC96LA044.
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Accident occurred Friday, December 29, 1995 in PYMATUNING, PA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 01/17/1997
Aircraft: Cessna 182E, registration: N3290Y
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 airplane had departed between 1900 and 2000. About 2215 it was observed on radar in a climbing turn. The pilot was not in radio contact with any ATC facility. The airplane continued to climb past 21,000 feet. About 0045, an ATC controller established radio contact with the pilot. The pilot indicated that he was out of fuel. The airplane was observed descending out of 21,000 feet. The pilot was transferred to another controller, and the pilot advised him that he was out of 21,000 feet and requested an approach. The controller informed the pilot of an airport 5 miles north of the airplane's position; however, the pilot declined the advice and stated, 'Yeah, I prefer water.' Similar conversations continued for the next 20 minutes, where the controller offered assistance and advice, and the pilot continued to request a water landing. During the descent, the pilot made a comment concerning the water, 'All things considered, I think that would be the best place to go.' He also stated, 'As you might have guessed, I have not had a good day...Ah you don't understand, I'm going swimming tonight.' The pilot's last transmission reported, 'Uh, I thing [sic] it's right under me.' The airplane then struck an ice covered reservoir in a nose down attitude, and the engine and cockpit areas penetrated the 6-inch thick ice. The airplane was operated by a flying club, overdue an annual maintenance inspection, and was not scheduled to be flown. The pilot's automobile had been involved in a fatal hit-and-run accident the night before the takeoff, and an arrest warrant had been issued for the pilot.

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

the pilot's intentional suicide.

Full narrative available

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