NTSB Identification: ANC08LA046
Nonscheduled 14 CFR Part 135: Air Taxi & Commuter
Accident occurred Tuesday, April 01, 2008 in Koliganek, AK
Probable Cause Approval Date: 12/11/2008
Aircraft: PIPER PA-32, registration: N8327S
Injuries: 1 Minor.

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 pilot reported that he was in cruise flight about 700 feet agl over near featureless snow-covered terrain when he encounter lowering ceilings. He described the weather conditions as rapidly deteriorating. He began a turn to reverse direction, and the airplane collided with terrain. His destination, about 10 miles away, was reporting a visibility of 2 miles in mist, and a ceiling of 400 feet broken. The ceiling was variable between 200 to 900 feet. A low ceiling and snow-covered terrain likely produced flat lighting conditions, making visual reference to terrain, and determining height above the ground difficult.

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

The pilot's VFR flight into adverse weather conditions that resulted in a collision with snow-covered terrain during a turn to reverse direction. Factors contributing to the accident were low ceilings, flat lighting conditions, and the snow-covered terrain.

Full narrative available

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