NTSB Identification: MIA08FA027
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Saturday, December 08, 2007 in Bloomfield, KY
Probable Cause Approval Date: 01/29/2009
Aircraft: CESSNA T210N, registration: N5431C
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.

A review of recorded radar data showed that the airplane was heading northwest towards the destination airport, descending through an altitude of 6,800 feet mean sea level (msl) at a constant rate of about 650 feet-per-minute, when it began to make a subtle turn to the north. About 32 seconds later, the airplane continued to turn and descend at a constant rate, reaching a maximum bank angle of about 40 to 50 degrees and exceeding the structural cruise speed by 20 knots calibrated airspeed (13 knots less than never exceed speed). Trajectory calculations showed that a breakup of the airplane occurred about 5 seconds later. The debris field heading was in a southeasterly direction located in close proximity to the last three radar returns. A weather study revealed that based on available weather data at the time of the accident, the airplane was likely in visual meteorological conditions until just prior to the breakup. With cloud tops to 13,000 feet, the possibility existed that the airplane entered instrument meteorological conditions. All of the fracture surfaces examined exhibited features consistent with static overload and no evidence of metal fatigue.

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

the pilot exceeded the design stress limits of the airplane, which resulted in the in-flight break up. Contributing to the accident was the pilot's loss of control in-flight due to spatial disorientation.

Full narrative available

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