NTSB Identification: LAX96FA122.
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Nonscheduled 14 CFR
Accident occurred Wednesday, February 28, 1996 in GRAND CANYON, AZ
Probable Cause Approval Date: 10/14/1997
Aircraft: Piper PA-31-350, registration: N27989
Injuries: 10 Uninjured.

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.

According to the operator, the pilot obtained preflight weather information from DUAT, ASOS, and had made a call to the Grand Canyon tower. The weather was above landing minimums and forecast to stay above. The operator stated that for the last 3 months the ASOS had not been reliable. According to the pilot's report, he received ATIS information 'Juliet' approaching Grand Canyon and it was 1,200 scattered with visibility of 3/4 miles. According to the FAA, information 'Juliet' was reporting, 50 minutes before the accident: a measured ceiling 1,300 feet broken; 3,000 feet overcast; visibility 3/4 mile in fog; temperature 23 degrees Fahrenheit; dew point 21 degrees Fahrenheit; wind calm; and the altimeter was 30.03 inHg. At the time of the accident, the ASOS was reporting indefinite 400 feet overcast with 1/4 mile in fog and snow. The ILS approach requires a minimum of a 200-foot ceiling and 1/2 mile visibility. The braking action was reported as poor due to snow and ice. The airplane landed to the left of the runway centerline and collapsed the landing gear as it slid sideways. A light ice buildup was observed on the leading edges of the airframe by airport personnel. According to the pilot, he had operated the deice boots just prior to landing.

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

the failure of the pilot to maintain directional control of the aircraft after landing. Contributing to the accident was the icy runway conditions with poor braking.

Full narrative available

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