Preliminary Accident Reports

December 2002 Issue

September 24, Yeehaw Junction, Fla. / Piper Saratoga

At about 1410 eastern time, a Piper PA-32R-301T suffered an in-flight breakup and crashed near Yeehaw Junction. The airplane was in cruise flight from Lantana to Orlando at 7,000 feet on an IFR flight plan when he requested a descent to 5,000 feet. The request was approved, but the airplane climbed to 7,500 feet. The pilot radioed he had suffered a “loss of gyros” and the aircraft then disappeared from radar. Calculations based on radar data showed descent rates exceeded 8,000 feet per minute. Level 4 and 5 thunderstorms were present in the area at the time....

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