NTSB Identification: CHI92LA283.
The docket is stored on NTSB microfiche number 47794.
Accident occurred Sunday, September 20, 1992 in BALDWIN, WI
Probable Cause Approval Date: 06/30/1993
Aircraft: CESSNA 182B, registration: N90BF
Injuries: 2 Minor.

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

THE ACCIDENT AIRPLANE ENCOUNTERED INSTRUMENT CONDITIONS (IMC) DURING CRUISE FLIGHT AT NIGHT. THE AIRPLANE COLLIDED WITH TREES AND TERRAIN AS THE PILOT WAS ATTEMPTING TO RETURN TO VISUAL FLIGHT CONDITIONS. CRUISE ALTITUDE WAS 2200 FEET. THE NEAREST WEATHER OBSERVATION FACILITY WAS APPROXIMATELY 20 MILES WEST OF THE ACCIDENT SITE AND 705 FEET ABOVE SEA LEVEL (MSL). 45 MINUTES BEFORE THE ACCIDENT THEY REPORTED A 1200 FOOT CEILING. VISIBILITY WAS 7 MILES. THE ELEVATION IN THE ACCIDENT AREA VARIES BETWEEN 1100 AND 1300 FEET MSL. FORECASTS OBTAINED BY THE PILOT PRIOR TO HIS DEPARTURE CALLED FOR MARGINAL VISUAL FLIGHT CONDITIONS DUE TO CEILINGS. THE PILOT STATED HE WAS PARALLELING A HIGHWAY AND USING THE LIGHTS FROM VEHICLES TO JUDGE VISIBILITY. THE LIGHTS BECAME OBSCURED BY CLOUDS AND THE PILOT STARTED A 180 DEGREE TURN. DURING THE TURN THE VISIBILITY WENT TO ZERO. HE TRIED TO REGAIN OUTSIDE VISUAL REFERENCE. WHEN HE LOOKED AT THE INSTRUMENTS THE AIRPLANE WAS IN A LEFT WING LOW DIVE. HE REDUCED POWER, LEVELED, AND PULLED UP THE NOSE. AS THE AIRPLANE LEVELED THEY BROKE OUT OF THE CLOUDS. THE PILOT SAW THE TREE LINE JUST BEFORE COLLISION.

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

SPATIAL DISORIENTATION AS THE PILOT ATTEMPTED VISUAL FLIGHT PROCEDURES IN INSTRUMENT METEOROLOGICAL CONDITIONS.

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