NTSB Identification: LAX90DVM03.
The docket is stored on NTSB microfiche number 42288.
Accident occurred Tuesday, August 07, 1990 in CALIF VALLEY, CA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 03/31/1993
Aircraft: ILLI THUNDER GULL, registration: N2223E
Injuries: 1 Fatal.

A WITNESS REPORTED THE AIRCRAFT WAS FLYING STRAIGHT AND LEVEL, THEN IT ENTERED AN ACCELERATING, DESCENDING, RIGHT TURN. THE WITNESS THEN SAW PART OF THE RIGHT WING SEPARATE FROM THE AIRCRAFT. A POST-ACCIDENT EXAMINTATION OF THE WRECKAGE DISCLOSED NO CONSTRUCTION, MATERIAL OR METALLURGICAL DEFECT. BASED ON THE COMPUTED GROSS WEIGHT, CENTER OF GRAVITY, AND TRIM POSTION AT THE TIME OF THE ACCIDENT, THE AIRCRAFT DESIGNER CALCULATED THE TRIM SPEED WAS 10 MPH OVER THE MAXIMUM DESIGNED VNE. TESTS OF THE PILOT'S BLOOD SHOWED A COCAINE LEVEL OF 2.2 MG/L AND BENZOYLECGONINE (METABOLITE OF COCAINE) AT 0.96 MG/L.

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

POOR JUDGEMENT OF THE PILOT FROM USE OF A DRUG (COCAINE), AND THE PILOT ALLOWING THE DESIGN STRESS LIMITS OF THE AIRCRAFT TO BE EXCEEDED, WHILE MANEUVERING, WHICH RESULTED IN OVERLOAD FAILURE OF THE WING SPAR & WING SEPARATION.

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