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Last updated: 6 December 2021
Date:Friday 15 September 1989
Type:Silhouette image of generic BE10 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Beechcraft 100 King Air
Operator:James Holmes
Registration: N887PE
MSN: B-49
First flight:
Total airframe hrs:9386
Engines: 2 Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6A-28
Crew:Fatalities: 2 / Occupants: 2
Passengers:Fatalities: 4 / Occupants: 4
Total:Fatalities: 6 / Occupants: 6
Aircraft damage: Destroyed
Aircraft fate: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location:1,7 km (1.1 mls) NNE of Mayfield Graves County Airport, KY (   United States of America)
Phase: Approach (APR)
Departure airport:Orlando Executive Airport, FL (ORL/KORL), United States of America
Destination airport:Mayfield Graves County Airport, KY, United States of America
During arrival, the flight was issued the current altimeter setting. The pilot requested vectors for an approach to runway 18, but the ARTCC controller could not accommodate the request. The pilot was cleared for a VOR/DME-A approach. MDA for the approach was 1080 feet msl (600 feet agl).
FBO personnel observed the aircraft fly over the airport and advised that it was too low. One of the pilots replied that they would be 'staying under the clouds.' The pilots had planned to land on runway 36, but reported they lost sight of the runway and would change to runway 18. Subsequently, the aircraft collided with a tree about 1 mile NNE of the airport, while on a westerly heading (approx position of base leg for a VFR pattern). The aircraft came to rest about 700 feet west of the tree and was destroyed by impact and fire.
The weather was in part: scattered clouds at 200 feet, overcast at 900 feet, visibility 3 miles with rain and fog, wind from 360 deg at 7 kts. The airport manager estimated there was a 200 feet ceiling at the airport.

Probable Cause:

PROBABLE CAUSE: "Failure of the pilot to follow IFR procedures and maintain the minimum descent altitude (MDA). Factors related to the accident were: darkness, the adverse weather conditions, and the tree."

Accident investigation:
Investigating agency: NTSB
Status: Investigation completed
Duration: 2 years
Accident number: ATL89FA213
Download report: Summary report



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This map shows the airport of departure and the intended destination of the flight. The line between the airports does not display the exact flight path.
Distance from Orlando Executive Airport, FL to Mayfield Graves County Airport, KY as the crow flies is 1131 km (707 miles).
Accident location: Approximate; accuracy within a few kilometers.

This information is not presented as the Flight Safety Foundation or the Aviation Safety Network’s opinion as to the cause of the accident. It is preliminary and is based on the facts as they are known at this time.
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