NTSB Identification: WPR12LA093
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Sunday, February 05, 2012 in Fresno, CA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 06/12/2013
Aircraft: CESSNA 172N, registration: N7582D
Injuries: 1 Fatal.

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

A witness reported that he observed the airplane flying about the height of nearby power lines and that the engine was sputtering. The airplane then banked right and impacted the power lines before falling to the ground. Postaccident examination of the airframe and engine revealed no mechanical malfunctions or failures that would have precluded normal operation.

The non-certificated pilot was flying the airplane, which had been reported stolen. The pilot’s toxicology results indicated that methamphetamine and amphetamines were detected in the pilot’s blood and liver specimens. (Local authorities also reported finding a plastic bag containing “crystal meth” in the accident airplane.) Both detected drug quantities were above therapeutic levels and likely contributed to the pilot’s performance and failure to maintain sufficient clearance from the power lines.

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

The non-certificated pilot’s failure to maintain clearance from power lines. Contributing to the accident was the pilot’s impairment due to performance-impairing drugs.

Full narrative available

Index for Feb2012 | Index of months