NTSB Identification: CEN10FA141
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Friday, March 05, 2010 in Marysville, OH
Probable Cause Approval Date: 05/26/2011
Aircraft: Evektor-Aerotechnik AS Sportstar Plus, registration: N930LA
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 sport pilot departed on a cross-country flight without a flight plan and there was no record of a weather briefing for the route of flight with forecasted instrument meteorological conditions (IMC). Recorded radar data showed that as the airplane approached the area of IMC, it changed heading and altitude and tracked southward, which was then followed by a descending turn with increasing airspeed. The airplane impacted a field in a nose-down attitude. The pilot was taking three different medications to treat his diabetes, which would have increased his risk for impairment due to excessively low blood sugar. He had been using a medication for respiratory symptoms combining a narcotic and an antihistamine, both of which have potentially impairing effects. He also may have taken another medication containing the same antihistamine. He had been using a stimulant typically prescribed for weight loss and a sedative previously prescribed for insomnia. He was at high risk for, and had previously been noted to possibly have, obstructive sleep apnea, which can cause severe fatigue and resultant impairment. The pilot may have been impaired or distracted by symptoms of his medical conditions or by effects of medications used to treat those conditions. The extent to which such possible impairment or distraction may have contributed to the accident is unclear. The crash severity precluded the determination of the existence or absence of substantive pre-existing disease, or the determination regarding when medications may have most recently been used. The pilot did not have a Federal Aviation Administration airman medical certificate, nor was he required to for a sport pilot certificate. Postaccident examination of the airplane revealed no anomalies that would have precluded normal operation.

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

The pilot's improper decision to initiate and continue a flight into instrument meteorological conditions that led to spatial disorientation and a loss of control during cruise flight.

Full narrative available

Index for Mar2010 | Index of months