NTSB Identification: NYC97FA103.
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Accident occurred Tuesday, June 03, 1997 in ELLISTON, VA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 09/04/1998
Aircraft: Cessna 210M, registration: N9162M
Injuries: 3 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 pilot/owner filed an instrument flight plan, listed himself as the pilot-in-command (PIC), and departed on an instrument proficiency flight with two passengers, who were both certified flight instructors (CFIs). The airplane was vectored for an LDA Runway 6 Approach in instrument meteorological conditions (IMC), and all radio communications were normal. The airplane was observed on radar turning away from the final approach course. No further communications were received from the airplane, and it descended below radar coverage. A witness on the ground observed the airplane exit and reenter the clouds, then heard a reduction in engine power. The airplane descended from the base of the clouds, in a nose down vertical descent, with the wings intact. Engine noise was heard to increase, followed by a 'swoosh' and bang. The 70-year old PIC had neither scheduled the flight with the employer of the CFIs nor was he listed on the their schedule. The 22-year old CFI rated passenger (seated in the front) had been a full-time college student until the previous month. His total flight experience was 340 hours, of which, 24 hours were as a CFI; and he had no experience in the make and model of airplane or with the PIC.
The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be: failure of the PIC to maintain control of the airplane, due to spatial disorientation. Full narrative available
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