NTSB Identification: MKC89FA083.
The docket is stored on NTSB microfiche number 39017.
Accident occurred Friday, March 24, 1989 in MAYFLOWER, AR
Probable Cause Approval Date: 07/11/1990
Aircraft: PIPER PA-38-112, registration: N2604N
Injuries: 2 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.

THE STU PILOT AND HIS STU PILOT RATED PASSENGER WERE FLYING LOW OVER THE ARKANSAS RIVER AS OBS BY TWO EYEWITNESSES LOCATED IN A BOAT IN A COVE NEAR THE EAST BANK OF THE RIVER. THE ACFT DISAPPEARED FOR A BRIEF TIME UNTIL IT AGAIN WAS SPOTTED, APPROACHING DIRECTLY AT THEM AT LOW ALTITUDE FROM THE NORTHEAST ALONG THE FINGER COVE. THE EYEWITNESSES STATED THE ACFT FLEW DIRECTLY OVERHEAD AND PULLED UP SHARPLY INTO A CLIMB. AT THE TOP OF THE CLIMB THE RIGHT WING STALLED AND THE AIRCRAFT DESCENDED RAPIDLY NOSE DOWN UNTIL HITTING THE WATER. THE AIRCRAFT RAPIDLY SANK IN 30 FEET OF WATER BEFORE IT COULD BE REACHED. THE STU HAD RECENTLY BEEN RELEASED FOR SOLO TRNG FLTS AND HAD ASKED IF PASSENGERS WERE ALLOWED. THE STU WAS INSTRUCTED THAT NO PASSENGERS COULD BE ALONG. INSPECTION OF THE ACFT REVEALED NO PRE-EXISTING MECHANICAL DEFECT OF FLIGHT CONTROLS OR AIRCRAFT ENG COMPONENTS.

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

THE PILOTS FAILURE TO MAINTAIN AIRSPEED (VS), AND INADVERTANT ENTRY INTO A STALL WITH NECESSARY REMEDIAL ACTION NOT UNDERSTOOD.

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