NTSB Identification: CHI91DCJ01.
The docket is stored on NTSB microfiche number 43118.
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Sunday, February 24, 1991 in WESTERN, NE
Probable Cause Approval Date: 03/31/1993
Aircraft: CESSNA 172N, registration: N738LL
Injuries: 1 Fatal.

THE NON-INSTRUMENT RATED PRIVATE PILOT DEPARTED ON A VFR CROSS COUNTRY FLIGHT IN VFR WEATHER CONDITIONS. ABOUT 9 MINUTES AFTER HE TOOK OFF, THE PILOT TOLD AIR TRAFFIC CONTROL (ATC) THAT HE WAS ENCOUNTERING SNOW FLURRIES, AND REQUESTED ANY PERTINENT UPDATED WEATHER REPORTS/PILOT REPORTS. ATC REPORTED SCATTERED LIGHT SNOW SHOWERS IN THE AREA, BUT HAD NO OTHER SIGNIFICANT INFORMATION AVAILABLE. ELEVEN MINUTES LATER THE PILOT REPORTED HE WAS LOSING GROUND CONTACT IN HEAVY SNOW AND REQUESTED VECTORS BACK TO THE DEPARTURE AIRPORT. THAT WAS THE LAST TRANSMISSION FROM THE ACCIDENT AIRPLANE. THE AIRPLANE IMPACTED THE GROUND ABOUT 30 MILES SOUTHWEST OF THE DEPARTURE AIRPORT. THE PILOT RECEIVED A PRE-FLIGHT WEATHER BRIEFING WHICH INCLUDED FLIGHT PRECAUTIONS FOR ICING AND POSSIBLE IFR CONDITIONS AND OCCASIONAL LIGHT SNOW AND FOG ALONG HIS FLIGHT PATH.

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

SPATIAL DISORIENTATION WHICH RESULTED IN A LOSS OF AIRCRAFT CONTROL. A FACTOR RELATED TO THE ACCIDENT WAS VFR FLIGHT INTO IMC.

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