NTSB Identification: CHI02FA262.
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Accident occurred Wednesday, August 28, 2002 in Newaygo, MI
Probable Cause Approval Date: 12/30/2003
Aircraft: Piper PA-28R-180, registration: N4988J
Injuries: 3 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 airplane impacted a power line over a river and then sunk into 25-30 feet of water. A witness saw the airplane fly over a dam upstream of the accident site, swooping down to an extremely low altitude. Another witness saw the airplane flying at an altitude of 20 feet above the river prior to impacting the power lines. Examination of the wreckage revealed no anomalies which would have precluded normal operation.

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

The altitude/clearance disregarded by the pilot and his ostentatious display. The wire and low altitude flight were a contributing factor.

Full narrative available

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