NTSB Identification: LAX89LA221.
The docket is stored on NTSB microfiche number 39769.
Accident occurred Sunday, June 18, 1989 in GRASS VALLEY, CA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 09/30/1991
Aircraft: CESSNA 172E, registration: N3618S
Injuries: 4 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.

THE PILOT REPORTED THE AIRCRAFT CLIMBED 50 TO 150 FEET ABOVE THE RUNWAY WHEN THE ENGINE BEGAN RUNNING ROUGH AND LOOSING POWER. HE WAS UNABLE TO MAINTAIN ALTITUDE AND ELECTED TO LAND ON A ROAD. THE AIRCRAFT'S WING STRUCK A BRIDGE DURING THE LANDING ROLL AND THE AIRCRAFT OVERTURNED. THE ENGINE LOG REFLECTED THAT THE RIGHT MAGNETO POINTS AND DISTRIBUTOR BLOCK WERE REPLACED AND BOTH MAGNETOS WERE RETIMED ON JULY 14, 1981 AT 4329 TOTAL AIRFRAME HOURS. THERE WAS NO EVIDENCE THAT INSPECTIONS WERE PERFORMED DURING THE EIGHT YEARS AND 1,233 OPERATIONAL HOURS PRECEDING THE ACCIDENT. DURING THE POST ACCIDENT ENGINE TEST THE RIGHT MAGNETO FAILED AFTER OPERATING FOR 10 MINUTES. AN EXAMINATION OF THE RIGHT MAGNETO COIL DISCLOSED EVIDENCE OF ARCING.

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

FAILURE TO PERFORM MAINTENANCE INSPECTIONS PRESCRIBED BY THE MAGNETO, ENGINE AND AIRCRAFT MANUFACTURERS. THE HIGH DENSITY ALTITUDE AND TERRAIN CONDITIONS WERE CONTRIBUTING FACTORS.

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