NTSB Identification: CEN12CA017
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Tuesday, October 11, 2011 in Lafayette, IN
Probable Cause Approval Date: 12/27/2011
Aircraft: LEARJET INC 60, registration: N64MG
Injuries: 4 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.

The pilot stated that he was taxiing from the ramp area with the taxi lights on. He said that the edge of the ramp was not marked, and before he could complete a turn, the nosewheel departed the pavement. He attempted to taxi across the grass area to the parallel taxiway about 50 feet from the ramp. However, the airplane struck a drainage ditch located between the ramp and the taxiway, which caused substantial damage to the delta fins on the underside of the aft fuselage. The pilot said that there were no mechanical failures or malfunctions with the airplane. He said that the ramp was poorly illuminated and the high overcast clouds combined to create "very dark" lighting conditions.

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

The pilot's decision to taxi the airplane across an unpaved area after the nosewheel inadvertently departed the ramp pavement.

Full narrative available

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