NTSB Identification: BFO93FA033.
The docket is stored on NTSB microfiche number 52246.
Nonscheduled 14 CFR
Accident occurred Tuesday, February 23, 1993 in LEMONT, PA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 11/03/1993
Aircraft: BEECH E18S, registration: N47E
Injuries: 1 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 INSTRUMENT RATED PILOT WAS EN ROUTE TO PICK UP CARGO. HE RECEIVED THREE PREFLIGHT WEATHER BRIEFINGS EARLIER THAT INDICATED SNOW, MOUNTAIN OBSCURATION, AND LOW VISIBILITY. HE REPORTED, 'SEEING THE LIGHTS OF UNIVERSITY,' AND REQUESTED A CONTACT APPROACH. HE ALSO SAID THAT IF HE COULD NOT GET IN, HE WOULD MAKE AN ILS APPROACH. WHEN THE AIRPLANE WAS 4 MILES SOUTH OF THE AIRPORT, THE NEW YORK AIR TRAFFIC CONTROLLER CLEARED THE PILOT FOR A CONTACT APPROACH TO RUNWAY 24. A WITNESS REPORTED HEARING A LOW FLYING AIRPLANE. HE STATED THAT IT WAS SNOWING HEAVILY AND HE SAW THE TAIL LIGHT OF AN AIRPLANE BRIEFLY THROUGH THE SNOW. HE ALSO REPORTED THAT A SNOW SQUALL WAS IN THE AREA AT THE TIME. SHORTLY AFTERWARD, HE HEARD WHAT WAS LATER DETERMINED TO BE THE SOUND OF THE COLLISION. SEARCH PERSONNEL LOCATED THE WRECKAGE 3.3 MILES SOUTH OF THE AIRPORT ON TOP OF MOUNT NITTANY WHICH WAS ABOUT 2000 FEET HIGH.

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

IMPROPER INFLIGHT PLANNING DECISION BY THE PILOT, AND HIS FAILURE TO MAINTAIN PROPER ALTITUDE DURING THE APPROACH. FACTORS RELATED TO THE ACCIDENT WERE DARKNESS, ADVERSE WEATHER CONDITIONS, AND HIGH TERRAIN.

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