NTSB Identification: NYC03LA076.
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Accident occurred Monday, March 31, 2003 in Shenandoah, VA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 03/02/2004
Aircraft: Cessna 172P, registration: CGIKO
Injuries: 2 Uninjured.

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 non-instrument rated pilot encountered snow showers in cruise flight at 4,500 feet msl. He attempted to divert to an airport, but could not locate it. The forward visibility continued to decrease, and the pilot performed a precautionary landing to a field. During the landing, the landing gear struck mud, and the airplane came to rest inverted. Prior to the flight, the pilot obtained a standard weather briefing from an FAA automated flight service station. The briefing did not include any forecasted snow showers for the area in which the pilot was flying.

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

The pilot's inadvertent encounter with snow showers. Factors were the snow and the unsuitable landing area.

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