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On February 23, 1995, at 1130 hours Pacific standard time, a Cessna A-188B, N731CZ, collided with the ground while maneuvering 1.5 miles south of Elmira, California. The aircraft was owned and operated by an agricultural operator and was conducting an aerial application flight under 14 CFR Part 137 of Federal Aviation Regulations (FARs). Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time and no flight plan was filed for the operation. The aircraft sustained substantial damage. The certified commercial pilot was not injured. The flight originated from a private agricultural strip in Dixon, California, at 1110 on the day of the accident.
The pilot completed his second swath run on a heading of 225 degrees and rolled into a 90-270 degree turn at about 100-feet agl. The pilot reported that, after rolling from the left back to right, he felt the aircraft encounter an area of turbulent air near the surface. He stated that he believed that he had inadvertently flown across the vortex turbulence generated by another aircraft that had just departed the area he was working. He said the turbulence caused his aircraft to descend abruptly which resulted in the aircraft's right wing contacting the ground before he could react and recover.
After colliding with the ground by the right wing and right gear, the aircraft rolled onto its right side before coming to rest. The pilot stated that at the time of accident, the aircraft's gross weight was approximately 3,700 pounds.