NTSB Identification: LAX01FA152.
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Accident occurred Sunday, April 22, 2001 in Carmel Valley, CA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 02/25/2003
Aircraft: Cessna 310F, registration: N5834X
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.

During an instrument departure climbout to VFR conditions on top, the airplane impacted a coastal mountain slope in near vertical, diving flight. Radar data showed that the initial climbout was on course; however, upon reaching the initial navigational fix, the airplane ceased climbing and turned in the wrong direction toward rising terrain. The pilot reported no difficulty and his voice was calm. The engine sound, audible in the background of the communication, was smooth and synchronized. The air traffic controller issued a terrain warning and instructed the pilot to reverse course immediately if not in VFR conditions. In the next 14 seconds the aircraft climbed 400 feet and then disappeared from radar. The airplane's instruments and switches were destroyed by impact.

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

The in-flight loss of control of the airplane in instrument meteorological conditions for undetermined reasons.

Full narrative available

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