NTSB Identification: CEN12TA604
14 CFR Public Use
Accident occurred Sunday, September 02, 2012 in Newberry, MI
Probable Cause Approval Date: 01/22/2013
Aircraft: CESSNA 182P, registration: N5981J
Injuries: 1 Serious.

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

The pilot detected a “hot electrical” odor during the local flight and decided to return to the airport. While on short final, a large puff of smoke was emitted from under the right side of the instrument panel and distracted the pilot. About the same time, the airplane encountered convective turbulence so severe that the pilot hit his head on the ceiling and everything that was on the seats was thrown forward. The pilot stated that he was further distracted by the turbulence encounter, and the airplane entered a nose down attitude and impacted the terrain before the pilot could take remedial action. The airplane slid about 200 feet before coming to a stop and a postimpact fire ensued. The cause of the electrical smell and smoke could not be determined as the fuselage was consumed by the postimpact fire, which likely resulted from fuel lines being ruptured during the impact.

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

The pilot’s failure to maintain control of the airplane due to distraction from a combination of smoke in the cockpit and a sudden turbulence encounter while on short final approach. The cause of the cockpit smoke could not be determined due to the extensive damage sustained by the airplane during the postimpact fire.

Full narrative available

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