NTSB Identification: SEA87FA062.
The docket is stored on NTSB microfiche number 32518.
Accident occurred Thursday, January 08, 1987 in ELLENSBURG, WA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 03/21/1988
Aircraft: CESSNA 150, registration: N704HM
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 TWO COMMERCIALLY CERTIFICATED INSTRUMENT RATED FLIGHT INSTRUCTORS DEPARTED ELLENSBURG AT APPROXIMATELY 1120 PST ON A LOCAL FLIGHT. BOTH PILOTS HAD APPOINTMENTS AT 1300 HOURS PST. VFR CONDITIONS PREVAILED IN LOWER TERRAIN NEAR ELLENSBURG, HOWEVER, A SCATTERED TO OVERCAST CLOUD LAYER EXISTED AT APPROXIMATELY 5000 FEET MSL THROUGHOUT THE AREA. ADDITIONALLY, WITNESSES REPORTED FOG & OBSCURATION IN HIGHER TERRAIN THROUGHOUT THE AREA NEAR THE SITE WITHIN A FEW HOURS SUBSEQUENT TO THE ACCIDENT. EVIDENCE INDICATED THAT A COURSE REVERSAL WAS BEING EXECUTED CONCURRENT WITH TREE IMPACTS AT APPROXIMATELY 4425 FEET MSL WHILE OVERFLYING RISING/MOUNTAINOUS TERRAIN. THERE WAS NO RECORD THAT EITHER PILOT HAD RECEIVED ANY FORMAL MOUNTAIN FLYING TRAINING.

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

IN-FLIGHT PLANNING/DECISION..IMPROPER..PILOT IN COMMAND

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

VFR FLIGHT INTO IMC..PERFORMED

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

CLEARANCE..NOT MAINTAINED




Contributing Factors

LACK OF FAMILIARITY WITH GEOGRAPHIC AREA


Contributing Factors

WEATHER CONDITION..LOW CEILING


Contributing Factors

TERRAIN CONDITION..RISING

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