NTSB Identification: CHI96FA184.
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Accident occurred Sunday, June 02, 1996 in AITKIN, MN
Probable Cause Approval Date: 10/14/1997
Aircraft: Piper PA-46-310P, registration: N9114Q
Injuries: 4 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 airplane was in cruise flight at 17,000 feet msl when the pilot told Minneapolis ARTCC 'We're picking up some ice and rain, and we're going to turn around.' ARTCC approved the request. Two minutes later the pilot told ARTCC that 'We're looking for some help to get around this weather southbound.' ARTCC told the pilot that he could turn either east or west. The pilot turned west, then 4 minutes later turned back to the south. The pilot then told ARTCC that they were still encountering weather. ARTCC directed the pilot to turn north and then east whenever he could. Approximately 1 minute later ARTCC radar showed the airplane in a rapid descent. The pilot then told ARTCC 'Minneapolis center, N9114Q is out of control.' The pilot had received a FSS briefing prior to takeoff, and was advised of convective conditions and precipitation building to the south along his intended route of flight. The airplane was approximately 548 pounds over maximum takeoff weight.

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

the pilot's continued flight into known adverse weather conditions and the pilot exceeding the design stress limits of the airplane. Factors contributing to this accident were: the thunderstorms, hail, and wind gusts, and the airplane's over maximum gross weight condition.

Full narrative available

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