NTSB Identification: LAX07LA065.
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Accident occurred Wednesday, December 27, 2006 in Lake Hughes, CA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 03/31/2008
Aircraft: Beech A36, registration: N4598S
Injuries: 1 Serious.

NTSB investigators may not have traveled in support of this investigation and used data provided by various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

Prior to flight, the pilot checked the weather and also received a weather briefing from a Flight Service Station. The briefing revealed high winds and mountain obscuration along his route of flight. In order to avoid the adverse weather, the pilot departed on a westerly heading and climbed to 12,500 feet rather than his usual altitude of 8,500 feet, on a northwesterly heading across mountainous terrain. Thirty minutes into the flight he encountered strong downdrafts and wind shear on the lee side of the mountains. He applied full power, and initiated a 180-degree turn but was unable to maintain altitude. The airplane descended into a cloud layer, and continued to experience severe turbulence; the airplane subsequently stalled and entered a spin. The pilot recovered from the spin momentarily, before the airplane again stalled and entered a second spin. The airplane then exited the clouds at approximately 500 feet agl. The pilot then force landed the airplane into rising terrain.

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

The pilot's inadequate preflight planning/preparation and attempted flight into known adverse weather during cruise, and his failure to maintain an adequate airspeed margin that resulted in a stall/spin. Turbulence was a factor.

Full narrative available

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