The pilot of a Bonanza accompanied by three passengers was approaching the airport in Richwood, La., in IFR conditions. When he checked in with the approach controller he gave his position as south of the airport at 7,000 feet MSL.
When the airplane was about 33 miles from the airport, the controller told the pilot to turn left 15° to intercept the localizer for the landing runway and descend to 2,000 feet MSL. Radar data showed the airplane turn to intercept the localizer but then overshoot the inbound course.
The airplane was about two miles left of course and continuing north when the local controller advised the pilot that he had flown through the final approach course and was still northbound. The pilot acknowledged the information and requested a vector to turn back to the localizer course. The controller instructed the pilot to turn right 70° to re-intercept the inbound course. He acknowledged the heading.
Radar data showed the airplane turn onto the localizer course. When the airplane was four miles from the final approach fix, the controller cleared the Bonanza for the approach and instructed the pilot to contact the tower. After the pilot contacted the tower, the tower controller cleared the airplane for landing. After the pilot told the tower controller that the airplane was at 3,000 feet MSL, the controller cancelled the landing clearance because the airplane was too high to intercept the glideslope. The tower issued missed approach instructions. There were no further communications from the pilot.
Radar data subsequently showed the airplane made a tight, right-descending turn to the south while at 1,600 feet MSL at an airspeed of 211 knots. The airplane climbed to 1,900 feet MSL and then descended. It disappeared from radar when it was headed south-southwest at 1,200 feet MSL.
Witnesses on the ground saw the airplane rapidly descending almost vertically toward the ground. They lost sight of the airplane as it descended below the tree tops and then heard it crash.
The NTSB attributed the accident to the pilot’s failure to maintain control of the airplane during a missed approach in instrument meteorological conditions.
NTSB Identification: CEN13FA143