NYC06LA073
NYC06LA073

On February 23, 2006, about 2315 eastern standard time, a Cessna 182D, N9178X, was destroyed after it impacted power lines while maneuvering near Weyers Cave, Virginia. The certificated airline transport pilot was fatally injured. Night visual meteorological conditions prevailed and no flight plan had been filed for the flight that departed Eagle's Nest Airport (W13), Waynesboro, Virginia. The personal flight was conducted under 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91.

The airplane was based at W13. The pilot was an airframe and powerplant mechanic, who was conducting a flight after performing some maintenance on the airplane's cowl hinges.

According to a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) inspector, the pilot was flying above Interstate 81, and communicating via a cell phone, to a friend driving northbound on Interstate 81. The driver stated that the pilot was flying over the highway when he observed flashes of light in the air, and he immediately realized that the airplane had struck power lines.

The airplane subsequently impacted the ground, and came to rest in a ditch, on the east side of the northbound lane of the highway, where it was destroyed during a postcrash fire.

Examination of the airplane by an FAA inspector, and a representative from the Cessna Aircraft Company, did not reveal any preimpact malfunctions. The power lines were located about 100 feet above the highway.

The pilot reported 4,000 hours of total flight experience on his most recent application for an FAA first class medical certificate, which was issued on August 31, 2005.

According to maintenance records, the airplane's most recent annual inspection was performed by the pilot, on February 1, 2006.

The toxicological testing report from the FAA Toxicology Accident Research Laboratory, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, was negative for drugs and alcohol for the pilot.

The weather reported at an airport that was located about 2 miles southeast of the accident site, about the time of the accident, included, a visibility of 10 statue miles, scattered clouds at 9,500 feet, and winds from 260 degrees at 10 knots, with 19 knot gusts.

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