NTSB Identification: IAD01FA097
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Tuesday, August 14, 2001 in MCGAHEYSVILLE, VA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 08/26/2002
Aircraft: Cessna 150, registration: N63351
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 flight instructor and student pilot were returning from a cross country flight, when a witness on the ground heard the airplane's engine "just cut-out". The witness looked up and saw the airplane "flying as it should." He said the airplane then "turned into a nose-dive" and started to spin toward the ground. As the airplane descended, the witness said it appeared as if the pilot was fighting the airplane. He also heard the engine trying to be re-started. The witness said the airplane "stayed in a consistent spiral" with a "really wide axis" until it disappeared into the trees. Additionally, he said the airplane took a long time to descend to the ground, and that the pilot had plenty of time to recover. The last nine seconds of recorded radar data indicated that the airplane had descended from 5,000 feet to 4,300 feet. The distance between the last radar return and the location of the accident site was approximately 765 feet. Three of the flight instructor's students reported that the flight instructor had asked them if they wanted to learn spins during their flight lessons. According to two students, the flight instructor would enter the spin from a power on stall, and recover after two to three rotations. However, on one occasion, a student said the flight instructor, "did a whole lot of rotations...way more than three. I estimated that we did about 10 rotations, but I am not exactly sure...The spiral was tight...The more we let it spin, the tighter the rotations. However, he had no problem recovering the airplane." The flight instructor had accrued a total of about 1,485.7 flight hours, of which 234.4 hours were in make and model, and 1,051.6 total hours were as flight instructor. Review of Federal Aviation Regulation (FAR) 61.107- Flight Proficiency, an applicant for a private pilot certificate with a rating for airplane single-engine land is not required to receive and log spin training from an authorized instructor. Examination of the airplane and engine revealed that there were no mechanical deficiencies.

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

The flight instructor's failure to recover from a spin for undetermined reasons.

Full narrative available

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