NTSB Identification: FTW88FA161.
The docket is stored on NTSB microfiche number 37923.
Accident occurred Saturday, September 03, 1988 in CARTHAGE, TX
Probable Cause Approval Date: 11/28/1989
Aircraft: PIPER PA-34-220T, registration: N83874
Injuries: 5 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.

DRG A NIGHT ARRIVAL, THE PLT RPRTD HE COULD MAKE A VISUAL APCH. AT 2341:37 CDT, THE ARTCC CONTROLLER INFORMED HIM THE DESTN ARPT WAS STRAIGHT AHEAD AT 12 MI & REQUESTED THAT HE RPRT WHEN THE ARPT WAS IN SIGHT. AT 2343:30, HE RPRTD THE RWYIN SIGHT & THE CONTROLLER CLEARED HIM FOR A VISUAL APCH. THE FINAL PORTIONS OF THE FLT WERE BELOW THE ALT FOR RADAR COVERAGE. SUBSEQUENTLY, THE ACFT CRASHED IN A WOODED AREA, AT A LOCATION & ON A HEADING THAT WOULD APPROXIMATE A LEFT BASE LEG FOR RWY 35. HOWEVER, INITIAL IMPACT WAS WITH TREES WHILE IN A STEEP RIGHT BANK. NO PREIMPACT PART FAILURE OR MALFUNCTION WAS FOUND DRG THE INVESTIGATION. ALTHOUGH OFFICIAL RPRTS FROM WX STATIONS IN THE AREA SHOWED THE WX WAS ABOVE VFR MINIMUMS, PERSONNEL IN THE AREA OF THE ACDNT SITE RPRTD THE SKY CONDITION WAS OBSCURED WITH FOG.

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

AIRCRAFT CONTROL..NOT MAINTAINED..PILOT IN COMMAND

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

VFR FLIGHT INTO IMC..INADVERTENT..PILOT IN COMMAND


Contributing Factors

LIGHT CONDITION..NIGHT


Contributing Factors

WEATHER CONDITION..FOG


Contributing Factors

SPATIAL DISORIENTATION..PILOT IN COMMAND


Contributing Factors

OBJECT..TREE(S)


Contributing Factors

WEATHER CONDITION..OBSCURATION

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