NTSB Identification: MIA00LA082.
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Accident occurred Friday, February 04, 2000 in ANDREWS, NC
Probable Cause Approval Date: 03/02/2001
Aircraft: Mooney M-20C, registration: N5743N
Injuries: 1 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 flight was on an IFR flight plan between Richmond, Virginia, and Knoxville Downtown Island Airport, and according to transcripts of radio communications between N5743N and Atlanta ARTCC, the pilot cancelled his IFR flight plan to proceed VFR, (with Atlanta ARTCC flight following) to avoid icing conditions. Following a lengthy, circuitous route around the eastern and southern quadrants of his destination, he experienced a sudden loss of engine power and crashed into trees at the 4,200 foot level in mountains about 50 miles south of his destination. The pilot stated flight conditions at the time of engine power loss were light snow and about 30 degrees F ambient temperature. A subsequent engine teardown examination revealed low compression on number two cylinder due to worn piston rings and black, sooty, carbon deposits on the spark plug electrodes for cylinders number two, three, and four. Reference to the carburetor icing probability charts for the conditions present put this flight within the region labeled 'serious icing at cruise power.'

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

The pilot's failure to use carburetor heat in a timely manner while maneuvering in conditions conducive to carburetor icing, resulting in the loss of engine power and collision with trees during the subsequent emergency descent.

Full narrative available

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