Preliminary Accident Reports

January 2001 Issue

Oct. 1, San Juan Bautista, Calif. / Beech Bonanza

At about 20:10 Pacific time, a Beech A36TC crashed near San Juan Bautista, killing all four occupants. The flight was en route from Mammoth Lakes to Watsonville. IMC prevailed. The pilot was not instrument rated, nor did he file a flight plan. According to air traffic controllers, the airplane was cruising at 8,000 feet when the controller advised the pilot to switch frequencies to a new sector. The pilot acknowledged the frequency change and reported he was going to spiral down through a hole in the clouds. He never checked in on the new frequency. The next afternoon a rancher noticed a burned area on his property, went to investigate and discovered the wreckage, which was 12 miles from the...

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