NTSB Identification: FTW89FA151.
The docket is stored on NTSB microfiche number 39804.
Accident occurred Monday, April 17, 1989 in JUNCTION, TX
Probable Cause Approval Date: 02/15/1991
Aircraft: BELLANCA 17-30A, registration: N8785V
Injuries: 1 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 NON-INSTRUMENT RATED PLT HAD RECENTLY ACCEPTED A NEW EMPLOYMENT POSITION & WAS USING HIS ACFT TO COMMUTE TO WORK. BEFORE TAKING OFF ON THE ACDNT FLT, HE OBTAINED A WX BRIEFING & WAS ADVISED THAT VFR FLT WAS NOT RECOMMENDED. DRG THE FLT, THE ACFT CRASHED IN AN AREA OF ADVERSE WX. A WITNESS, WHO HEARD THE ACFT CRASH, ESTIMATED THE CEILING WAS 200 FT OVERCAST & VISIBILITY WAS 1/2 MI WITH FOG & DRIZZLE. THE ACFT CRASHED NEAR A HIGHWAY THAT EVENTUALLY PASSED NEAR THE DESTINATION AIRPORT. AN EXAM OF THE WRECKAGE REVEALED THE ACFT HAD IMPACTED IN A STEEP DESCENT. THE WITNESS STATED THAT THE ENG WAS REVVED UP TO A HIGH RPM WHEN IMPACT OCCURRED. NO PREIMPACT PART FAILURE OR MALFUNCTION OF THE ACFT WAS FOUND DRG THE INVESTIGATION, THOUGH THE ACFT WAS EXTENSIVELY DAMAGED.

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

CONTINUED VFR FLIGHT INTO INSTRUMENT METEOROLOGICAL CONDITIONS (IMC) BY THE PILOT, WHICH RESULTED IN HIS FAILURE TO MAINTAIN CONTROL OF THE AIRCRAFT DUE TO SPATIAL DISORIENTATION. THE WEATHER CONDITIONS AND HIS SELF-INDUCED PRESSURE WERE FACTORS.

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