NTSB Identification: SEA00FA133.
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Accident occurred Wednesday, July 12, 2000 in ASHTON, ID
Probable Cause Approval Date: 06/14/2001
Aircraft: Cessna 150E, registration: N6196T
Injuries: 3 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 unlicensed 'pilot' of the Cessna 150 made a low pass over an open-air assembly of campers in order to drop a message to a family member who was part of the group below. Because the sun was in the process of setting, the tops of hills around the camp were illuminated with a golden glow. But the valley in which the camp was situated, including a coniferous tree located about 280 feet south of the camp, was sitting in the shadow created by a ridge to the west. Just after the note was dropped over the camp, the inboard portion of the aircraft's left wing collided with the top ten feet of the tree. The aircraft then spun/cartwheeled through the air for another 88 feet before impacting the surface of the gravel road. Upon impacting the road, the aircraft burst into flames and slid another 122 feet. During the 'pilot's' FAA physical in 1995, it was determined that he was blind in his left eye.
The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be: The pilot's failure to maintain clearance from a tree while making a low pass over an outdoor gathering of individuals. Factors include the intentional low pass, a tree located in a shadow generated by the sun's low position at dusk, hilly terrain, and the 'pilot's' visual deficiency. Full narrative available
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