NTSB Identification: DEN04FA043.
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Accident occurred Friday, February 06, 2004 in Walcott, WY
Probable Cause Approval Date: 09/13/2005
Aircraft: Cessna T206H, registration: N51192
Injuries: 1 Fatal,1 Minor,1 Uninjured.

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 339 hour private instrument rated pilot departed on a VFR clearance, but changed to an IFR clearance as weather deteriorated. Approximately 14 minutes before the accident, he reported his position incorrectly to ATC (he reported that he was on the 320 degree radial when he was on the 140 degree radial). In the same time frame, he once reported his altitude as 5,500 feet when radar showed him at 9,500 feet, and once that he was at 10 nm from the VOR when ATC said that he was at 1 nm. Radar data also indicates that the pilot made his turn to the outbound radial 3 nm before he got to the VOR (contrary to IFR published procedures). The surviving passenger in the front right seat said that the weather was becoming cloudy (IMC) with intermittent visible contact with the ground. The pilot's flight logbook indicated that he had 6.6 hours of actual instrument flying. His records indicate that he had had an instrument proficiency flight on December 1, 2003, but the airplane he flew that in was equipped with CDI (course deviation indicator) VOR navigation avionics not like the HSI (horizontal situation indicator) VOR navigation avionics equipment in the accident airplane. It could not be determined how much experience/training the pilot had with HSI VOR navigation avionics. The front right seat surviving passenger said that just before impact with the mountain, the pilot was "busy with the airplane's avionics." The airplane impacted the mountain 9.2 nm south of the pilot's designated Victor-6 airway.

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

The pilot not following proper IFR procedures for tracking a VOR radial while on an IFR flight plan in IMC conditions, and not maintaining clearance with terrain during cruise flight. Contributing factors were the mountain, and the cloudy weather condition.

Full narrative available

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