NTSB Identification: SEA97FA075.
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Accident occurred Sunday, March 23, 1997 in DILLON, MT
Probable Cause Approval Date: 05/29/1998
Aircraft: Cessna T210L, registration: N22219
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 collided with terrain at high airspeed, & wreckage was distributed about 380 ft from the 1st impact mark. Weather in the area was described as broken showers & squalls. During on-scene investigation, no pre-crash mechanical discrepancy was noted. No eye-witnesses were found, but a person reported hearing an airplane in the vicinity at about the time of the accident. This witness was on top of a mountain 24 miles northwest of the accident site. He heard an airplane that he was believed was heading south. The witness observed that the weather in the vicinity was cloud covered, and the top of nearby Clark Canyon could not be seen. Also, the witness reported that the weather was very windy, with large clouds moving by all day. The visibility was reported to be good at times, but within minutes visibility could become obscured. Radar data indicated that a radar target with a VFR transponder code and no altitude encoder response was on a southwesterly heading in the vicinity, around the time of the accident. The last radar response on that target was at 1248:57, about 10 miles north of the accident site. The accident site was covered with snow that obscured distinguishing vegetation, rocks, or other characteristics on the surface.

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

flight by the pilot into adverse weather conditions, and his failure to maintaint altitude/clearance from terrain. The adverse weather condition was a related factor.

Full narrative available

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