NTSB Identification: WPR09CA088
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Saturday, January 17, 2009 in Ventura, CA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 04/15/2009
Aircraft: QUICKSILVER SPORT 2S R582, registration: N6976C
Injuries: 2 Uninjured.

NTSB investigators used data provided by various entities, including, but not limited to, the Federal Aviation Administration and/or the operator and did not travel in support of this investigation to prepare this aircraft accident report.

According to the pilot of the amateur-built airplane, while he was cruising about 500 feet above the Pacific Ocean, the airplane's control stick appeared to be bound-up and the plane was banking to the left. He put his airplane in the water about 600 feet from the coastline and he and his passenger were rescued by a person on a jet ski. The pilot recovered his airplane from the water and he examined it; the stick and aileron cables appeared to be normal, and he did not observe any evidence of a flight control problem. The pilot did not indicate that there was any malfunction with the engine, propeller, or accessories. A Federal Aviation Administration airworthiness inspector examined the airplane wreckage and confirmed flight control continuity without any evidence of control binding. The pilot made a statement to a responding sheriff's deputy that he had been flying with his passenger at an altitude between 200 and 300 feet above the water, and about 100 yards from the shore, when the engine began to lose power. The pilot stated that he turned his airplane toward the shore and began to look for a safe place to land when suddenly something broke off. The airplane began to lose altitude and, unable to reach the shore, the airplane crashed into the ocean. The pilot's passenger was also interviewed by the deputy and estimated that the pilot had been flying between 100 and 200 feet above the ocean just prior to the impact. The deputy also interviewed a witness who was located at a beachside camp site who observed the airplane flying between 20 and 50 feet above the ocean just prior to it turning left and impacting the water. A Safety Board investigator interviewed a witness who was also located at a beach camp site. The witness provided a drawing depicting the accident airplane's flight path, crash site, and the locations of bystanders. The witness reported that prior to the crash he had observed the airplane flying straight and level in a southerly direction about 20 feet above the water, 100 yards from the beach, and approximately 50 yards (horizontally) from surfers. The witness stated that "when the plane turned toward the beach...the left wing clipped the water" about 100 yards horizontally from the witness.

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

The pilot's failure to maintain clearance from the water.

Full narrative available

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