CHI94LA052
CHI94LA052

The instrument rated commercial pilot was flying in instrument meteorological conditions on an IFR flight plan to Roben-Hood Airport (77D) Big Rapids, Michigan on December 17, 1993. While enroute, the pilot learned that the White Cloud (HIC) VOR was out of service. As N8919G approached HIC VOR via radar vectors, Minneapolis Center turned on the VOR so that the pilot would be able to fly an instrument approach. According to the pilot's written statement on NTSB Form 6120.1/2, the pilot was almost over the VOR at a cruising altitude of 4000 feet when he received an approach clearance. Concerned that the VOR would be on for only a short time, the pilot "hurried the approach from that moment on." The pilot recounted being at 1600 feet MSL when he hit what he thought were birds. After landing, the pilot examined the aircraft for damage and found debris from impacting trees. A map prepared by Minneapolis Air Route Traffic Control Center indicates N8919G at 2000 feet at the point of contact with the trees. The pilot reported no injuries. The aircraft sustained substantial damage. The scheduled cargo flight, operating under 14 CFR Part 135 for Superior Aviation, Lansing, Michigan, departed from Lansing, Michigan about 0600 CST.

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