NTSB Identification: NYC08FA231
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Sunday, June 29, 2008 in Jasper, AL
Probable Cause Approval Date: 06/11/2009
Aircraft: BEECH 95-B55, registration: N727BC
Injuries: 4 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 non-instrument-rated pilot overloaded his airplane and intentionally departed into an overcast ceiling without filing a flight plan. The radar target identified as the accident airplane diverged from its intended southerly course to an S-shaped northerly track, and climbed and descended between 1,300 feet and 2,600 feet at speeds that varied between 100 knots and 160 knots. The final radar targets depicted a descent and were clustered approximately over the crash site, 1 mile west of the departure airport. Examination of the wreckage did not reveal any preimpact mechanical anomalies. According to Federal Aviation Administration Advisory Circular 61-134, one of the leading causes of general aviation accidents is "continued VFR [visual flight rules] flight into IMC [instrument meteorological conditions]... The importance of complete weather information, understanding the significance of the weather information, and being able to correlate the pilot's skills and training, aircraft capabilities, and operating environment with an accurate forecast cannot be emphasized enough... VFR pilots in reduced visual conditions may develop spatial disorientation and lose control..." It was reported that the pilot had operated under VFR in IMC on several occasions prior to the accident.

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

The pilot's intentional visual flight into known instrument meteorological conditions, resulting in spatial disorientation and a subsequent loss of control in flight. Contributing to the accident was the overweight and aft-center-of-gravity condition of the airplane at takeoff.

Full narrative available

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