NTSB Identification: ATL06LA035.
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Accident occurred Friday, January 13, 2006 in Childersburg, AL
Probable Cause Approval Date: 05/30/2006
Aircraft: Cirrus SR22, registration: N87HK
Injuries: 3 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 pilot obtained a full Direct User Access Terminal (DUATS) the night before the accident. The briefing was not valid for the time of the accident. The National Weather Service (NWS) issued AIRMET Zulu update 3 for icing and freezing level data valid from 1445 CST until 2100 CST. The advisory warned of occasional moderate to mixed icing-in-clouds and in precipitation between 3,000 to 8,000 feet. The departure airport and the accident site were within the boundaries of the advisory. The pilot requested an abbreviated DUATS weather briefing at 1244 EST for his route of flight between Birmingham, Alabama, and Orlando, Florida. The in-flight advisories were to expire at 1500 CST. The briefing provided several adverse weather phenomena impacting the route of flight from icing, turbulence, and thunderstorms. The pilot stated he was not aware of AIRMET ZULU UPT 3, that was issued by the NWS before he departed Birmingham. The airplane was equipped with an XM Satellite radio. The AIRMET was transmitted by the NWS and over the XM radio installed in the airplane. The airplane is not certified for flights into icing conditions. The pilot stated the flight departed from runway 24 and he contacted the air traffic controller on the radio. The airplane was identified by radar and the pilot was instructed to climb to 7,000 feet direct to Hande intersection. The airplane entered the clouds at 5,000 feet on autopilot climbing at 120 knots. Upon reaching 7,000 feet the airplane encountered icing conditions. The pilot informed the controller that he would like to climb to 9,000 feet which was approved. As the airplane reached the cloud tops in visual flight conditions at 8,000 feet the airplane began to buffet. The pilot looked at his airspeed indicator and it indicated 80 knots. The airplane stalled, entered a spin back into instrument flight conditions. The pilot deployed the ballistic parachute system and informed the air traffic controller of his actions. The airplane descended under the parachute canopy into the trees.

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

The pilot's inadequate preflight planning, failure to obtain a current weather briefing, and his decision to operate the airplane into a known area of icing outside the airplanes certification standards resulting in the aircraft accumulating ice, a loss of airspeed, an inadvertent stall/spin and subsequent collision with trees.

Full narrative available

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