On January 27, 1997, at 1341 central standard time (cst), a Cessna 414, N414AM, sustained substantial damage when it departed the runway during landing roll in Springfield, Missouri. The airline transport rated pilot and one passenger reported no injuries. The 14 CFR Part 91, business flight originated in Chattanooga, Tennessee, about 1200, with a planned destination of Springfield, Missouri. Instrument meteorological conditions prevailed and an IFR flight plan was filed.

A tower controller who observed the accident reported that the airplane touched down on runway 02, abeam the north VASI, "left of centerline." The left main landing gear departed the runway to the left two different times prior to the runway 32 intersection. "The aircraft veered further left... the nose gear collapsed, and the aircraft did a 180 degree turn."

In his written statement, the pilot reported "after touchdown... the plane veered to the left and struck a taxi sign." The passenger reported that he could see ice on the windscreen during the approach. From where he was sitting, he "could not see through it due to ice." He wrote "the plane seemed to skid or swerve sideways from the moment we landed."

A briefer at the Nashville Flight Service Station reported that he briefed the pilot of N414AM at 1106 cst. He gave him a summary of "pertinent adverse conditions, the synoptic conditions, and the current and forecasted weather along his route of flight." He advised the pilot of PIREPs for cloud layers and icing along the route and NOTAMs concerning thin ice on the runway at Springfield.

An icing airmet was in effect for occasional moderate rime ice below flight level 180 and isolated severe mixed icing conditions. According to a statement by a tower controller in the Springfield Air Traffic Control Tower, the controller queried the pilot for a PIREP when the airplane was on 12 mile final. The pilot reported "one half inch of rime ice" and "pretty moderate" icing conditions. Local authorities who reported to the accident site reported weather conditions at the time of the accident were "freezing rain and sleet." Photographs of the airplane, taken by fire and rescue personnel immediately following the accident, exhibit the windscreen obscured by rime ice.

The Federal Aviation Administration Inspector who examined the airplane reported the airplane was equipped with an alcohol windscreen deicing system and no electric windscreen heat. He reported no evidence of mechanical failure or preimpact malfunction.

The Cessna 414 pilot's operating handbook specifies an "electric anti-icing pilot's windshield" must be installed for flight into icing conditions.

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