NTSB Identification: CHI90FA026.
The docket is stored on NTSB microfiche number 41728.
Accident occurred Tuesday, November 14, 1989 in MT MORRIS, IL
Probable Cause Approval Date: 06/30/1992
Aircraft: CESSNA 172D, registration: N2796U
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.

PRIVATE PILOT WHO WAS NOT INSTRUMENT RATED TOOK OFF AT NIGHT IN IMC CONDITIONS. WITNESSES REPORTED THE AIRCRAFT MANEUVERING AT LOW ALTITUDE WITH STEEP ANGLE OF BANK, AND AN ERRATICALLY RUNNING ENGINE. AIRCRAFT IMPACTED IN AN OPEN FIELD AT HIGH SPEED IN AN INVERTED NOSE DOWN ATTITUDE. CEILING WAS 500 FEET OVERCAST WITH FOG AND DRIZZLE, VISIBILITY 1 MILE OR LESS, AND CONDITIONS WERE FAVORABLE FOR CARBURETOR ICING. THE TEMPERATURE WAS 43 DEGREES F, AND THE DEW POINT WAS 43 DEGREES F. THE PILOT RECEIVED HIS PILOT CERTIFICATE FIVE MONTHS PRIOR TO ACCIDENT, AND HAD NOT FLOWN IN MORE THAN 90 DAYS.

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

VFR FLIGHT INTO IMC AND SPATIAL DISORIENTATION OF THE PILOT. CONTRIBUTING TO THE ACCIDENT WERE THE METEOROLOGICAL CONDITIONS AND THE OVERCONFIDENCE AND LACK OF EXPERIENCE OF THE PILOT.

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