NTSB Identification: CHI89LA045.
The docket is stored on NTSB microfiche number 38311.
Accident occurred Saturday, January 14, 1989 in VALPARAISO, IN
Probable Cause Approval Date: 01/22/1991
Aircraft: PIPER PA-28-180, registration: N3331R
Injuries: 3 Uninjured.

NTSB investigators may not have traveled in support of this investigation and used data provided by various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

NO PREFLIGHT WX BRIEFING WAS OBTAINED BEFORE THE FLT. DURING CLIMB-OUT, THE PLT HEARD ABOUT ICING CONDITIONS AT A NEARBY AIRPORT & ELECTED TO RETURN & LAND. BEFORE LANDING, HE ENCOUNTERED FREEZING RAIN & A RAPID ACCUMULATION OF ICE ON THE ACFT. ICE ON THE WINDSHIELD RESTRICTED THE PLT'S FORWARD VISIBILITY, REQUIRING HIM TO USE THE SIDE WINDOWS. DURING THE FLARE TO LAND, HE RAISED THE NOSE OF THE ACFT TO ARREST A SINK RATE, BUT THE ACFT LANDED HARD, COLLAPSING THE RIGHT MAIN GEAR.

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

INADEQUATE PREFLIGHT PREPARATION BY THE PILOT, WHICH RESULTED IN INADVERTENT FLIGHT IN ICING CONDITIONS AND RAPID ACCUMULATION OF AIRFRAME ICE, AND THE PILOT'S FAILURE TO MAINTAIN SUFFICIENT AIRSPEED TO FLARE DURING THE LANDING. FACTORS RELATED TO THE ACCIDENT WERE: ADVERSE WEATHER CONDITIONS AND THE PILOT'S LACK OF VISUAL PERCEPTION WITH ICE ON THE WINDSHIELD.

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