NTSB Identification: LAX91FA045.
The docket is stored on NTSB microfiche number 44622.
Accident occurred Monday, November 26, 1990 in SHOW LOW, AZ
Probable Cause Approval Date: 05/10/1993
Aircraft: PIPER PA-28R-201, registration: N31638
Injuries: 1 Fatal,1 Serious.

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 INSTRUMENT RATED PILOT AND HIS WIFE WERE ATTEMPTING TO FLY NON-STOP FROM ALBUQUERQUE, NM, TO RAMONA, CA. THEY DEPARTED ALBUQUERQUE AT 1035 AND ENCOUNTERED CLOUDS, STRONG HEADWINDS, AND ICING CONDITIONS. IN AN EFFORT AT AVOIDING THE CLOUDS, THE PILOT CLIMBED TO 14,000 FEET. STILL IN CLOUDS WITH A GROUND SPEED OF 72 KNOTS, THE PILOT DESCENDED TO 12,000 FEET AND ELECTED TO LAND SHORT OF HIS PLANNED DESTINATION. WHILE DIVERTING TO SHOW LOW, AZ, IN FREEZING RAIN/SNOW CONDITIONS, THE FUEL INJECTED ENGINE STARTED RUNNING ROUGH AND LOST POWER AT ABOUT 1327. UNABLE TO MAINTAIN ALTITUDE, THE PILOT WAS FORCED TO LAND IN A WOODED AREA. SUBSEQUENTLY, THE AIRPLANE COLLIDED WITH TREES AND CAME TO REST UPSIDE DOWN. THE ELT ACTIVATED AND THE SERIOUSLY INJURED WIFE AS RESCUED.

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

THE PILOT'S IMPROPER IN-FLIGHT PLANNING/DECISION, WHICH RESULTED IN LOSS OF ENGINE POWER, DUE TO INDUCTION SYSTEM ICING. FACTORS RELATED TO THE ACCIDENT WERE: THE ADVERSE WEATHER CONDITION AND LACK OF A SUITABLE AREA FOR A FORCED LANDING.

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