NTSB Identification: FTW97FA044.
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Accident occurred Wednesday, November 20, 1996 in FORT WORTH, TX
Probable Cause Approval Date: 07/17/2001
Aircraft: Piper PA-28R-200, registration: N1394T
Injuries: 2 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.

During dark night instrument meteorological flight conditions, the pilots (a CFI and a private pilot) of the single-engine airplane executed a missed approach after reaching decision height during an ILS approach with the airport below landing weather minimums (visibility 1/8 of a mile in fog). During a second ILS approach attempt, the airplane collided with power lines approximately 3/4 of a mile short of the runway threshold. The airplane, configured with the landing gear extended and the flaps extended 10 degrees, impacted the ground and a highway guardrail approximately 300 feet south of the power lines. No distress calls were received from the airplane. No discrepancies were found with the airplane or engine that could have prevented normal operation. Toxicological tests for the private pilot were positive for marihuana. The CFI had worked all day preceding the flight, and the private pilot had taken a 'nap' in the afternoon preceding the flight. ATC voice recordings revealed that both pilots were acknowledging radio transmissions prior to and during the approach, and it could not be determined which pilot was at the controls.

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

the pilots' continued descent of the aircraft below decision height. Factors contributing to the accident were the fog, the dark night illumination, one of the pilot's impairment due to use of marihuana, and both pilots' fatigue.

Full narrative available

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