NTSB Identification: ERA12LA045
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Tuesday, October 18, 2011 in Woodrow, WV
Probable Cause Approval Date: 07/18/2013
Aircraft: GRAFF WILBUR C BEARHAWK, registration: N5456C
Injuries: 2 Uninjured.

NTSB investigators may not have traveled in support of this investigation and used data provided by various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

The pilot stated that he was flying in a slow-flight configuration for more than 20 minutes when the engine began to lose power. Although the pilot applied carburetor heat, the engine continued to lose power. The pilot made a forced landing on a highway and collided with a road sign and a ditch. A postaccident engine run was conducted, and no anomalies that would have precluded normal operation were noted. According to the Federal Aviation Administration carburetor icing chart, the weather conditions in the area at the time of the accident were favorable for the accumulation of serious carburetor icing. It is likely that the continued slow flight in those conditions resulted in the loss of engine power due to carburetor icing, and the pilot’s application of carburetor heat was too late.

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

The pilot’s delayed use of carburetor heat while operating in conditions conducive to carburetor icing.

Full narrative available

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