NTSB Identification: ANC96FA059.
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Accident occurred Sunday, April 28, 1996 in PALMER, AK
Probable Cause Approval Date: 01/08/1997
Aircraft: Cessna 150, registration: N8115U
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.

According to information provided by the pilot's family, the pilot went for a local flight prior to a planned church service at 1100. A property owner near the accident site heard the sound of an airplane approaching, a 'small explosion,' and the sound of an impact at 0811. He said the engine sounded normal until he heard the 'small explosion.' Examination of the engine revealed that the left and right magnetos were defective. Bench tests showed a malfunction with each magneto. The airplane had received an annual inspection 40 months prior to the accident. The records showed that the pilot's medical certificate had expired and that he was 28 months overdue for a biennial flight review. An examination of the accident site showed that the accident site was in the shadow of a mountain. The surrounding area showed that a forced landing area was located one-half mile away on a bearing of 320 degrees from the accident site.

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

loss of engine power due to a malfunction of the airplane's magneto ignition system, and the pilot's failure to have an annual inspection performed. Factors relating to the accident were: the pilot's lack of recent experience and inadequate in-flight planning and decision.

Full narrative available

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