NTSB Identification: LAX90LA326.
The docket is stored on NTSB microfiche number 45145.
Accident occurred Wednesday, September 19, 1990 in MOUNT WILSON, CA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 12/30/1992
Aircraft: PIPER PA-28-180, registration: N6528J
Injuries: 1 Fatal.

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 NON-INSTRUMENT RATED 2800-HR PRIVATE PILOT WAS EXPERIENCED IN THE AIRPLANE AND FAMILIAR WITH THE ROUTE OF FLIGHT. THE PILOT OBSERVED THE DARK OVERCAST SKY CONDITIONS IN THE DIRECTION OF HIS PLANNED TRIP, & INDICATED THAT WHILE EN ROUTE IF THE WEATHER DETERIORATED HE WOULD RETURN TO THE DEPARTURE AIRPORT. THE PILOT TOOK OFF UNDER VFR CONDITIONS & HEADED IN AN EASTERLY DIRECTION. EIGHT MIN LATER THE PILOT CONTACTED RADAR & REQUESTED FLIGHT FOLLOWING SERVICE TOWARD HIS EASTERLY DESTINATION. TWO MIN LATER THE AIRPLANE WAS IDENTIFIED ON RADAR, & TWO MIN THEREAFTER RADAR CONTACT WAS LOST. THE LAST FOUR MIN OF RECORDED RADAR SHOWED THAT THE AIRPLANE HAD CLIMBED FROM 2600 FT TO 3500 FEET MSL & HAD TURNED 90 DEG LEFT FROM AN EASTERLY TO A NORTHERLY COURSE. NEARBY WEATHER REPORTING FACILITIES INDICATED THE CLOUD BASE & TOPS WERE RESPECTIVELY 3800 FT & 5700 FT MSL. THE CRASH SITE WAS 4750 FT MSL.

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

THE PILOT'S INADVERTENT FLIGHT INTO IMC. CONTRIBUTING FACTORS RELATED TO THE PILOT'S FAILURE TO REQUEST IN-FLIGHT WEATHER AVOIDANCE ASSISTANCE AND HIS MISJUDGED EVALUATION OF THE EN ROUTE WEATHER.

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