NTSB Identification: SEA98FA001.
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Accident occurred Friday, October 10, 1997 in LEADORE, ID
Probable Cause Approval Date: 07/13/1998
Aircraft: Piper PA-28-181, registration: N2938B
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.

An aircraft was seen flying to the east under a 300-500 foot overcast about 25 miles west of the accident site. At that time, the ambient light conditions had just turned from dusk to dark, and witnesses sensed that the pilot was following the road that ran near the center of the valley through which the aircraft was flying. The aircraft was next seen about 20 miles east of the first sighting, flying low over the road, and entering the west side of Gilmore Summit. When the pilot did not arrive at his destination, a search was begun. The aircraft was located in the hills near the summit. Local officials reported that during the evening, the weather had been getting worse, the clouds had been lowering, and snow started falling in the summit, soon after the time of the accident.

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

the pilot's inadvertent entry into instrument meteorological conditions, and his failure to maintain clearance from wooded terrain in the area where he was maneuvering. Factors relating to the accident include: darkness, low ceiling, and high/mountainous terrain.

Full narrative available

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