NTSB Identification: ATL84FA093.
The docket is stored on NTSB microfiche number 24719.
Accident occurred Thursday, February 09, 1984 in BLUEFIELD, WV
Aircraft: PIPER PA-32RT-300T, registration: N22457
Injuries: 4 Fatal,2 Serious.

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 BEGAN HIS TAKEOFF DURING THE HOURS OF DARKNESS, BUT IN VMC WX. HE STATED THAT DURING THE TAKEOFF ROLL AT ABOUT 65 TO 75 KTS JUST PRIOR TO ROTATION, THE LANDING LIGHT EXTINGUISHED. PLT STATED THAT 2 TO 3 SECONDS LATER, HE ROTATED & DUE TO THE LONG NOSE OF THE ACFT, HE LOST SIGHT OF THE RWY LIGHTS. HE CHECKED THE INSTRUMENTS TO KEEP THE ACFT IN A PROPER CLIMB, BUT SHORTLY THEREAFTER, THE LEFT WING HIT THE TOP OF A TALL TREE. THE PLT'S FATHER SAID HE OBSERVED THE ACFT ENTERING A LEFT TURN AFTER LIFT-OFF, THEN HE LOST SIGHT OF THE PLANE. THE ONLY SURVIVING PASSENGER SAID THE ENG SOUND REMAINED CONSTANT, BUT THE ACFT VEERED LEFT AFTER LIFT-OFF. MOMENTS LATER, THE ACFT COLLIDED WITH TREES, CRASHED & BURNED. INITIAL IMPACT OCCURRED ON A HEADING OF 030 DEG, ABOUT 500 FT LEFT OF THE RWY. NO PREIMPACT/PART FAILURE OR MALFUNCTION WAS FOUND. THE PLT HAD BEEN TREATED FOR GLAUCOMA & HAD BEEN DENIED A 3RD CLASS MEDICAL CERTIFICATE ON 1/31/84, AWAITING AN EYE EVALUATION. ARPT ELEV 2857 FT; CRASH SITE ELEV APRX 2400 FT

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

AIRCRAFT HANDLING..NOT MAINTAINED..PILOT IN COMMAND


Contributing Factors

OBJECT..TREE(S)




Contributing Factors

LIGHT CONDITION..DARK NIGHT


Contributing Factors

VISUAL/AURAL DETECTION..PILOT IN COMMAND


Contributing Factors

LANDING LIGHT(S)..FAILURE,TOTAL


Contributing Factors

DIVERTED ATTENTION..PILOT IN COMMAND


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