Accident Cirrus SR22 N383GM, Friday 9 January 2015
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Date:Friday 9 January 2015
Type:Silhouette image of generic SR22 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different    
Cirrus SR22
Registration: N383GM
MSN: 0555
Year of manufacture:2003
Total airframe hrs:1145 hours
Engine model:Continental IO-550 SERIES
Fatalities:Fatalities: 1 / Occupants: 1
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Substantial
Location:Tooele, UT -   United States of America
Phase: En route
Departure airport:South Valley Regional Airport, UT (U42)
Destination airport:,
Investigating agency: NTSB
Confidence Rating: Accident investigation report completed and information captured
The noninstrument-rated private pilot departed during the late afternoon and flew over the southern portion of the Great Salt Lake. According to data recovered from the airplane’s avionics system, which did not capture altitude, the duration of the flight was about 9 minutes. During the final minute of the flight, the airplane conducted a gradual left turn at an engine power setting of about 2,200 rpm. Shortly thereafter, the airplane impacted the lake. Postaccident examination of the airplane revealed no evidence of mechanical malfunctions or failures that would have precluded normal operation.
Local meteorological observations indicated that restricted visibility and fog were forecast throughout the area about the time of the accident. It is likely that the pilot encountered these conditions inflight and lost visual reference to the ground and/or horizon. Given the pilot’s lack of an instrument rating and of recent instrument flight experience, the loss of visual reference likely resulted in spatial disorientation.

Toxicological testing on the pilot revealed the presence of bupropion, an antidepressant; hydrocodone, an opiod analgesic; and diphenhydramine, a sedating antihistamine. The investigation was unable to determine if the use of bupropion or the cognitive effects of any underlying depression contributed to the accident. Because the hydrocodone was found in the urine but not the blood, it no longer caused systemic effects and played no role in the accident. However, it is likely that the effects of diphenhydramine impaired the pilot’s cognitive and psychomotor performance at the time of the accident, and contributed to his spatial disorientation.

Probable Cause: The non-instrument rated pilot’s decision to depart into low visibility conditions, which resulted in spatial disorientation and a loss of control. Contributing to the accident was the pilot’s impaired performance due to his use of the sedating antihistamine, diphenhydramine.

Accident investigation:
Investigating agency: NTSB
Report number: WPR15FA082
Status: Investigation completed
Duration: 2 years
Download report: Final report





Photo: NTSB

Revision history:

10-Jan-2015 18:42 gerard57 Added
10-Jan-2015 18:43 harro Updated [Location, Departure airport, Narrative]
10-Jan-2015 22:11 Anon. Updated [Location, Departure airport, Destination airport, Source]
10-Jan-2015 22:12 Geno Updated [Location, Narrative]
10-Jan-2015 22:59 Geno Updated [Date, Aircraft type, Registration, Cn, Source]
20-Jan-2015 22:48 Geno Updated [Time, Source]
21-Dec-2016 19:28 ASN Update Bot Updated [Time, Damage, Category, Investigating agency]
27-Feb-2017 16:07 PiperOnslaught Updated [Source, Narrative]
19-Aug-2017 13:16 ASN Update Bot Updated [Other fatalities, Departure airport, Destination airport, Source, Narrative]
11-Sep-2022 16:01 Captain Adam Updated [Other fatalities, Location, Departure airport, Source, Narrative, Photo]

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