NTSB Identification: FTW97FA049.
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Accident occurred Wednesday, November 27, 1996 in TUCUMCARI, NM
Probable Cause Approval Date: 03/31/1998
Aircraft: Beech A36TC, registration: N48PD
Injuries: 1 Fatal,2 Serious.

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.

Due to en route weather, the noninstrument-rated pilot decided to land at an en route airport. During the descent to the airport, the pilot reported a loss of engine power. The passenger stated that the airplane 'appeared to be gliding down toward a field and then it started to spin out of control.' A witness observed the airplane at 150 to 200 feet AGL with the left wing low, then perpendicular to the sky, followed by a nose low impact' short of the runway in flat terrain. Maintenance records did not reveal any uncorrected maintenance defects. Flight control continuity was confirmed. The right rear forward facing seat was found detached from the cabin floor where the nut plates pulled through the floor. Prescription and nonprescription drugs were found in the aircraft, and the toxicology was positive for Verapamil, a high blood pressure medication that may be approved by FAA for use by pilots; however, the FAA records did not indicate that the pilot had requested approval to use the drug. An engine test that was run to full throttle did not reveal any discrepancies that would have contributed to a total loss of engine power.

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

the total loss of engine power for undetermined reasons and the pilot's failure to maintain airspeed.

Full narrative available

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