NTSB Identification: WPR10FA116
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Monday, January 18, 2010 in Lytle Creek, CA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 10/04/2012
Aircraft: CESSNA 340, registration: N2217B
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 was on a cross-country flight near mountainous terrain when he encountered clouds along the flight path. A comparison of recorded radar data and weather reports in the local area indicated that the pilot was maneuvering near the cloud bases in an area with low visibility and ceilings. Based on the erratic and circling flight path, it is likely that the pilot was having difficulty determining his location and desired flight track when the airplane collided with terrain. Postaccident examination of the airframe and engine revealed no mechanical failures or malfunctions that would have precluded normal operation.

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

The pilot’s loss of situational awareness while maneuvering under a cloud layer and failure to maintain sufficient clearance from mountainous terrain.

Full narrative available

Index for Jan2010 | Index of months