NTSB Identification: NYC06FA048.
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Accident occurred Sunday, January 01, 2006 in Dawson, GA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 05/29/2007
Aircraft: Beech D55, registration: N8165W
Injuries: 2 Fatal,3 Serious.
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 pilot and four passengers departed with full fuel on an IFR cross-country flight. Approximately 3 hours after departure, the pilot initiated an instrument approach at an airport where he planned to refuel. Due to low cloud ceilings, the pilot was unable to land, and flew to an alternate airport. He attempted another instrument approach, and when he again could not land, he informed ATC that the airplane was "running out of fuel," and he needed to be vectored to the closest airport. The pilot attempted another instrument approach at the third airport; however, the pilot-rated passenger reported the cloud layer was approximately 100 feet, and they could not visually obtain the runway environment. Witnesses observed the airplane circle the runway three times, before the nose suddenly dropped straight down, and impacted the ground. Examination of the airplane revealed approximately 4 gallons of fuel remained in the fuel tanks following the accident, and no mechanical anomalies were noted. At the time of the accident, the airplane had been flying for a little over four hours. According to the Beechcraft Baron Pilot's Operating Handbook, each engine burned approximately 12-13 gallons of fuel per hour, and the endurance for the airplane was approximately 4.5 hours. A review of flight service station data revealed that the pilot obtained a weather briefing prior to departing, which indicated deteriorating weather conditions for the estimated time of arrival, but did not obtain any further updates while en route. The pilot-rated passenger stated that the engines continued to operate until impact.
The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be: The pilot's failure to maintain sufficient airspeed to preclude a stall, which resulted in an inadvertent stall and loss of control while circling to land. Factors associated with the accident were the pilot's inadequate in-flight planning and weather evaluation, low clouds, a low fuel condition, and an inadvertent stall. Full narrative available
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