NTSB Identification: LAX07FA160.
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Accident occurred Friday, May 11, 2007 in Lake Pleasant, AZ
Probable Cause Approval Date: 06/30/2008
Aircraft: Diamond Aircraft Industries DA 40, registration: N512DS
Injuries: 2 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.

The pilot telephoned an acquaintance who was boating on a lake, and informed him that he planned to overfly the lake. At the end of the evening's civil twilight, witnesses observed the airplane approach the lake. The pilot telephoned the acquaintance and asked him to shine a light toward the airplane to facilitate being located on the lake. Other recreational boaters in the vicinity reported observing the airplane perform low altitude maneuvers, including a steep pull-up and a 70-degree angle bank. Witnesses estimated that some maneuvers were performed within a wingspan or two above the lake. The witnesses said the engine was not sputtering and sounded "real strong." During one of the buzzing maneuvers, the airplane descended into the lake, fragmented, and sank. The accident occurred minutes after the end of civil twilight with a marginally visible horizon. A majority of the wreckage, to include the engine, was not recovered.

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

The pilot's failure to maintain sufficient altitude above the surface of water during an intentional buzzing maneuver. Contributing to the accident was the nighttime lighting environment.

Full narrative available

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