Date & Time: Aug 18, 1995 at 1642 LT
Type of aircraft:
Piper PA-31-350 Navajo Chieftain
Pietsch Flying Service
Thief River Falls - Minot
United States of America
Crew on board:
Pax on board:
Captain / Total hours on type:
Aircraft flight hours:
After deplaning passengers at Thief River Falls after an air taxi flight, the pilot was reportedly anxious to return to his base in Minot to prepare for another trip the following day, and left for the return trip within a few minutes after his arrival at Thief River Falls. There was no record of a weather briefing. Observations of Doppler radar by the University of North Dakota, and a Safety Board meteorological study, show that the airplane had penetrated a thunderstorm when control was lost. The airplane had encountered the center of a microburst, and was located directly under the downdraft.
The pilot-in-command's continuing flight into adverse weather. Factors were the pilot-in-command's failure to obtain a weather observation and the adverse weather.