NTSB Identification: ATL98LA006.
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Accident occurred Tuesday, October 21, 1997 in WEST PALM BEACH, FL
Probable Cause Approval Date: 06/26/1998
Aircraft: Diamond Aircraft Industries DA20-A1, registration: N534SS
Injuries: 2 Serious.

NTSB investigators may not have traveled in support of this investigation and used data provided by various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

According to the pilot of a small airplane (Diamond Aircraft Industries DA20-A1) he was cleared to land on 27R. While on final approach at about 200 feet, a large airplane (MD-80) passed close to him on the right. The controller warned the pilot of possible wake turbulence. The airplane then rolled and crashed into the ground. During an investigation, an FAA inspector stated (and air traffic control audio tapes confirmed) that the pilot had been cleared to land on runway 27L, and he had been advised that his traffic was an MD-80, landing on 27R. After being cleared to land on 27L, the airplane deviated towards runway 27R. The FAA inspector stated that air traffic controllers observed the nose of the airplane go up, then the airplane rolled left and impacted the ground in a left wing low and partially inverted attitude.

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

the pilot's inadvertent use of the wrong runway, and his improper decision to continue the approach behind a large airplane (MD-80), which resulted in a wake turbulence encounter, loss of aircraft control, and collision with terrain.

Full narrative available

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