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N2742T accident description

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Crash location Unknown
Nearest city Lake City, CO
38.029997°N, 107.315333°W
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Tail number N2742T
Accident date 31 May 1992
Aircraft type Beech 35-C33
Additional details: None

NTSB description

On May 31, 1992, approximately 1600 mountain daylight time, a Beech 35-C33, N2742T, impacted mountainous terrain about 7 miles west of Lake City, Colorado. The non-instrument rated private pilot was fatally injured and the airplane was destroyed. Weather documents indicate instrument meteorological conditions prevailed at the accident site.

According to the pilot's wife, her husband departed Beckley, West Virginia, on the afternoon of May 30, and flew to the Kansas City, Missouri, area. He telephoned her and told her he would call her the following evening, and would probably be home on June 1.

Witnesses observed N2742T land at Meadow Lake Airport in Falcon, Colorado, approximately 1300 on May 31, and the pilot refueled his airplane at a self-service pump. According to the Phillips 66 Petroleum Company in Bartlesville, Oklahoma, the purchase was computer-recorded at 1306. Witnesses also watched the airplane depart approximately 1400, and turn towards the Colorado Springs, Colorado, Terminal Radar Service Area (TRSA). They said weather conditions were marginal, with snow mixed with rain northeast of the airport.

The airplane was reported missing on June 3, 1992. A two week air search was conducted by the Civil Air Patrol to no avail. A hiker found the wreckage on September 5, 1994, at the south end of Copper Gulch at the 13,700 foot level of 14,309 foot Uncompahgre Peak.

Although the three closest weather observation stations to the accident site (Telluride, 24 miles west; Montrose, 39 miles northwest; Gunnison, 40 miles northeast) were reporting visual meteorological conditions at the approximate time of the accident, other weather data indicates instrument meteorological

conditions prevailed. Weather satellite photos taken at 1401, 1431, 1501, 1531, and 1601 depicted cloud coverage at both the departure point and accident site. Radar Summary Charts prepared at 1435, 1535, and 1635, showed a band of level 1, 3, and 5 thunderstorms over most of central and southeastern Colorado, moving southeast. Convective SIGMETS (significant meteorology) 17C, 18C, 20C, 22C, and 24C were in effect, warning of these thunderstorms. AIRMET (airman meteorology) Sierra was valid until 2000 for instrument meteorological conditions (occasional ceiling below 1,000 feet and visibility below 3 miles in precipitation); mountain obscuration (clouds), and occasional moderate rime icing above the freezing level, extending to 20,000 feet MSL (above mean sea level).

Examination of accident site photographs taken by the sheriff's office disclosed both wings attached to the fuselage, and the propeller attached to the engine. One blade was straight, the other blade was bent aft approximately 8 inches from the hub. Miscellaneous small debris lay in close proximity to the main body of wreckage. There was no evidence of any ground scars or widespread distribution of wreckage.

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