NTSB Identification: ERA12CA050
14 CFR Part 137: Agricultural
Accident occurred Monday, October 24, 2011 in McAlpin, FL
Probable Cause Approval Date: 03/27/2012
Aircraft: AIR TRACTOR INC AT-301, registration: N3169C
Injuries: 1 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, he had successfully completed six aerial application passes below transmission lines that ran diagonally above a rectangular agricultural field. The pilot had also successfully completed 11 or 12 similar application flights over the same field during previous years, including 1 earlier that month. As the pilot turned the airplane toward its seventh pass, sun position and spray residue on the windshield resulted in his briefly losing sight of the transmission lines. The pilot regained sight of the transmission lines and continued the pass; however, the airplane struck the lines, damaging the wing spar. The pilot did not report any preexisting mechanical anomalies with the airplane.

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

The pilot's misjudgment of the airplane's distance from known transmission lines.

Full narrative available

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