NTSB Identification: MIA00FA260.
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Accident occurred Monday, September 04, 2000 in ODESSA, FL
Probable Cause Approval Date: 02/20/2002
Aircraft: Beech B-95, registration: N3WT
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 accident aircraft was found in a field after an emergency locator transmitter beacon had made an alert of a possible accident having occurred. At about 1225, a witness, who had also been a student pilot, was in a housing development near where the accident aircraft was found, and he said that he had observed an aircraft maneuvering at a low altitude, just above the tree line. He said he saw the aircraft enter a steep bank, and start a dive with its left wing down. According to the witness, the aircraft then went below the tree line, and he waited for signs of an impact, such as noise or smoke, but did not hear or see anything. He said he then assumed that the pilot might have recovered enough to set the aircraft down in the field. He said the aircraft had descended as an eagle would, had it been attacking a small animal. FAA Tampa Approach radar information showed that the accident aircraft had been at 300 feet at 1221:44, and it had climbed to a maximum altitude of 1,100 feet at 1223:35. At 1224:21, radar information showed the aircraft at 700 feet, prior to all radar information being lost. The accident occurred during daylight hours, in visual meteorological condition, and examination of the accident aircraft did not reveal any preexisting failure or malfunction to the aircraft or any of its systems. The accident aircraft propeller signatures that were found were consistent with the left propeller having been feathered, and the right propeller rotating upon impact.

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

the pilot's failure to maintain Vmc, which resulted in a loss of control, and collision with the ground. Contributing to the accident was the pilot's decision to feather a propeller powered by an operational engine, while at a low altitude.

Full narrative available

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