NTSB Identification: FTW90FA094.
The docket is stored on NTSB microfiche number 41891.
Accident occurred Tuesday, April 10, 1990 in LE COMPTE, LA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 12/30/1992
Aircraft: BEECH B35-C33A, registration: N7968M
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.

THERE WAS NO EVIDENCE THAT THE NON-INSTRUMENT RATED PILOT RECEIVED A WEATHER BRIEF. HE DEPARTED UNDER VMC BUT ENCOUNTERED, AND WAS IN THE VICINITY OF AT THE TIME OF THE ACCIDENT, INTENSE LEVEL 5 THUNDERSTORMS. THESE STORMS CONTAINED HEAVY RAIN AND MODERATE TO SEVERE, AND POSSIBLY EXTREME, TURBULENCE. THE THUNDERSTORMS WERE EMBEDDED IN CLOUDS LAYERED TO ABOUT 10,000 FEET. EXISTING WEATHER FORECASTS WERE SUBSTANTIALLY CORRECT AND THERE WAS ADEQUATE WARNING OF THE THUNDERSTORM ACTIVITY. IMPACT OCCURRED APPROXIMATELY 80 DEGREES NOSE DOWN IN A MUDDY FIELD. THE ENGINE WAS RECOVERED FROM A CRATER 20 FEET DEEP. ALL COMPONENTS OF THE AIRPLANE WERE IN OR AROUND THE IMPACT CRATER. THE PILOT HAD DELAYED HIS DEPARTURE FOR TWO DAYS PRIOR TO THE ACCIDENT. HE HAD JURY DUTY IN THE VICINITY OF HIS DESTINATION ON THE DAY FOLLOWING THE ACCIDENT.

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

THE PILOT'S CONTINUATION OF VFR FLIGHT INTO IMC. FACTORS WERE THE PILOT'S FAILURE TO OBTAIN A PRE-FLIGHT WEATHER BRIEF AND HIS INADEQUATE EVALUTION OF EXISTING WEATHER.

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