NTSB Identification: NYC07FA091.
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Accident occurred Wednesday, April 04, 2007 in Trappe, MD
Probable Cause Approval Date: 04/30/2008
Aircraft: Piper PA-30, registration: N555EM
Injuries: 3 Fatal.

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.

While en route to his destination, the pilot flew through an area of rain and thunderstorms. He reported to air traffic control (ATC) that he was using "weather radar" onboard the airplane, which updated every five minutes, to deviate around the weather. As the airplane was exiting the weather, the pilot reported he was turning direct toward his destination. As the airplane was in a gradual right turn, the pilot reported that he "lost attitude," and shortly thereafter, the left wing separated from the airplane. The pilot did receive a weather briefing prior to the flight, which included advisories and a convective significant meteorological information (SIGMET) for thunderstorms along his route. According to the pilot's logbook, he had accumulated 4,000 hours of total flight experience, which included 167 hours of actual instrument experience. In the previous 90 days, he accumulated 1.5 hours of actual instrument experience. Examination of the airplane revealed no preimpact mechanical anomalies.

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

The pilot's improper decision to fly into an area of thunderstorms, which resulted in a loss of aircraft control and subsequent in-flight breakup. Contributing to the accident was the thunderstorm.

Full narrative available

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