NTSB Identification: DFW06LA103.
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Accident occurred Saturday, April 15, 2006 in Meridian, MS
Probable Cause Approval Date: 03/26/2007
Aircraft: Air Tractor AT-602, registration: N5003E
Injuries: 1 Fatal.

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 8,600-hour commercial pilot was maneuvering at a low altitude during a local aerial application flight, when the airplane impacted a tree and subsequently the ground. The airplane came to rest in the upright position and was destroyed by a post-impact fire. All major components of the airplane were accounted for at the accident site. Continuity was established to all of the airplane's flight controls. An examination of the airplane's engine and propeller revealed no pre-impact anomalies. A toxicological evaluation of the pilot's specimens revealed hydrocodone and alprazolam. Both drugs have been shown to have a negative effect on psychomotor task. The level of hydrocodone reported in the pilot's blood was more then 50 times the level expected about one and a half hours following a typical single maximum dose of medication. The level of alprazolam reported in the pilot's blood was consistent with more than twice the dose shown to cause impairment.

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

The pilot's failure to maintain clearance from trees. Contributing factors were the drug impairment and low maneuvering altitude.

Full narrative available

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