Mid-air collision Accident Beechcraft D55 Baron N7142N, Sunday 9 January 1983
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Date:Sunday 9 January 1983
Type:Silhouette image of generic BE55 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different    
Beechcraft D55 Baron
Registration: N7142N
MSN: TE-497
Year of manufacture:1967
Fatalities:Fatalities: 7 / Occupants: 7
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Destroyed
Location:30 miles south of Cherry Point, NC -   United States of America
Phase: En route
Departure airport:Nassau, Bahamas
Destination airport:Norfolk, VA (ORF)
Investigating agency: NTSB
Confidence Rating: Accident investigation report completed and information captured
A Beechcraft D55 Baron (N7142N) and a USAF McDonnell Douglas F-4C Phantom II (63-7536) collided in flight at 9,300 feet about 30 miles south of Cherry Point, North Carolina, USA. The twin-engine Beech Baron was operating under visual flight rules from Nassau, the Bahamas, to Norfok, Virginia with a pilot and six passengers on board.
The Baron crashed at sea and none of the occupants were recovered. The Phantom from the Michigan Air National Guard was operating a Special Military Instrument Intercept Clearance Mission from Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, Goldsboro, South Carolina, USA. The purpose of the mission was to intercept an unkown target. The aircrew of the F-4C consisted of a pilot and a weapons systerns officer seated in tandem. The F-4C sustained substantial damage to the left wing, and the left drop tank assembly separated. The flightcrew wes not injured in the accident, and the airplane returned to Seymour Johnson Air Force Base without further incident.

The National Transportation Safety Board did not determine the probable cause of this accident as the board members did not agree on a statement.

The probable cause statement prepared by the investigators, and endorsed by the chairman, read: "The National Transportation Safety Board determines that the probable cause of this accident was the failure of the F-4C pilot to maintain an appropriate intercept closing speed and a safe separation distance between his airplane and the Beech Baron and radio contact with appropriate FAA facilities before penetrating the Air Defense Identification Zone, or to file and activate an instrument flight plan before operating in instrument meteorological conditions. Contributing to the accident was the failure of the Fertile Control staff to coordinate information concerning positive identification of the Baron in a timely manner precluding a decision to terminate the intercept mission."

Accident investigation:
Investigating agency: NTSB
Report number: ATL83MA084
Status: Investigation completed
Download report: Final report


NTSB: https://www.ntsb.gov/ntsb/brief.asp?ev_id=20001214X41935

Revision history:

24-Oct-2008 10:30 ASN archive Added
13-Aug-2011 03:15 harro Updated [Source, Narrative]
21-Dec-2016 19:22 ASN Update Bot Updated [Time, Damage, Category, Investigating agency]
12-Feb-2020 16:55 harro Updated [Location, Narrative, Accident report, ]

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