NTSB Identification: WPR14LA112
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Sunday, January 26, 2014 in Stanwood, WA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 09/24/2014
Aircraft: WEINZIERL SEAREY, registration: N669DT
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 noncertificated pilot reported that, following an uneventful local sightseeing flight, he conducted a low pass over a lake with glassy water conditions; he did not intend to land. The pilot thought the airplane was about 3 or 4 feet above the water when it suddenly skimmed the water’s surface. The pilot pulled up, but the airplane subsequently nosed down into the water, and it became partially submerged. It is likely that the glassy water conditions adversely affected the pilot’s depth perception, which led to his subsequent failure to judge the height above the water and resulted in the inadvertent touchdown. The pilot reported no preaccident mechanical malfunctions or failures with the airplane that would have precluded normal operation.

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

The noncertificated pilot’s failure to maintain clearance from water while maneuvering at a low altitude over glassy water conditions, which adversely affected his depth perception.

Full narrative available

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