NTSB Identification: SEA06LA112.
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Scheduled 14 CFR
Accident occurred Thursday, June 01, 2006 in Port Townsend, WA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 01/31/2007
Aircraft: de Havilland DHC-3T, registration: N606KA
Injuries: 11 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 airplane was on a company activated visual flight rules (VFR) flight plan over ocean water. The pilot said the weather conditions deteriorated with a lowering ceiling and visibility. He said that the water condition was glassy smooth with no visual definition, and this condition made it increasingly difficult to be sure he was maintaining forward visibility. He began to turn back to better VFR conditions, but conditions worsened; he believed that he inadvertently entered a fog bank. He elected to perform a precautionary landing on the water. He said that with no visual definition, he misjudged his altitude, and landed hard. The airplane's fuselage was bent/deformed, the fuselage skin was wrinkled, and the dorsal stabilizer was bent/wrinkled. At 0655, the weather conditions approximately 14 nautical miles north of the precautionary landing site were: wind calm; visibility 7 statute miles with shallow fog; cloud condition 900 feet scattered, 2,000 feet scattered, 5,000 feet broken and 20,000 feet broken; temperature 55 degrees Fahrenheit; dew point 54 degrees Fahrenheit; altimeter setting 29.95 inches. The pilot reported that at the time of the attempted landing, the visibility was zero, the wind condition was zero, and the ceiling was zero.
The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be: The pilot's misjudgment of the airplane's height above the water during a precautionary landing which resulted in a hard landing. Contributing factors were glassy water conditions, fog, and the pilot's inadvertent VFR flight into IMC.
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