Date & Time: Feb 19, 2009 at 1812 LT
Operator:
Registration:
N41185
Survivors:
Yes
Schedule:
Brevig Mission - Nome
MSN:
31-8553001
YOM:
1985
Flight number:
FTA8218
Crew on board:
1
Crew fatalities:
0
Pax on board:
5
Pax fatalities:
0
Other fatalities:
0
Total fatalities:
0
Captain / Total flying hours:
24850
Captain / Total hours on type:
7500
Aircraft flight hours:
10928
Circumstances:
The scheduled commuter flight was about 10 miles north of the destination airport, operating under a special visual-flight-rules clearance, and descending for landing in instrument meteorological conditions. According to the pilot he started a gradual descent over an area of featureless, snow-covered, down-sloping terrain in whiteout and flat light conditions. During the descent a localized snow shower momentarily reduced the pilot’s forward visibility and he was unable to discern any terrain features. The airplane collided with terrain in an all-white snow/ice field and sustained substantial damage. At the time of the accident the destination airport was reporting visibility of 1.5 statute miles in light snow and mist, broken layers at 900 and 1,600 feet, and 3,200 feet overcast, with a temperature and dew point of 25 degrees Fahrenheit. The pilot reported that there were no pre accident mechanical problems with the airplane and that the accident could have been avoided if the flight had been operated under an instrument-flight-rules flight plan.
Probable cause:
The pilot's continued flight into adverse weather and his failure to maintain clearance from terrain while on approach in flat light conditions.
Final Report:
N41185.pdf96.53 KB