NTSB Identification: NYC01LA224.
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Accident occurred Monday, September 10, 2001 in Washington, CT
Probable Cause Approval Date: 01/02/2002
Aircraft: Yakovlev YAK-52, registration: N1189N
Injuries: 1 Fatal.

NTSB investigators may not have traveled in support of this investigation and used data provided by various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

The pilot purchased the airplane a couple of days before the accident in the State of Washington, and was ferrying it to Providence, Rhode Island. The airplane departed on the last leg of the cross-country flight VFR, and was enroute to Providence when the accident happened. A weather observation taken 30 minutes after the accident at an airport approximately 22 miles to the south of the accident site, recorded the wind as calm, visibility 3 miles in rain and mist, overcast clouds at 6,500 feet, temperature 72 degrees Fahrenheit, dew point 70 degrees Fahrenheit, and an altimeter setting of 30.07 Hg. A weather radar image captured 23 minutes before the accident showed an area of strong radar returns consistent with heavy precipitation in the vicinity of the accident site. A witness reported that the accident site was rainy, foggy, and "extremely" dark when the accident happened. The pilot was scheduled to work 16 hours the day after the accident. The pilot also left a voice message the day before the accident stating she was "socked in" from a storm approaching from the west. The pilot had approximately 1,680 hours of total flight experience. The airplane impacted the ground approximately 40 degrees nose down. Examination of the wreckage revealed no preimpact failures or malfunctions.

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

The pilot's failure to maintain aircraft control. Factors in the accident were the dark night, reduced visibility, and the pilot's decision to conduct VFR operations at night in adverse weather conditions.

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