The pilot was preparing to spray a hay field near Garfield, Kansas, when the Air Tractor AT-502B collided with the top set of power lines that were about 60 feet tall and hit the ground. The pilot was killed in the accident.The operator said that this was the pilot’s first time spraying this field and that he was not familiar with the field or the surrounding obstacles.
The operator reported that a stand of trees was opposite the power lines and that it was difficult to see the top wires as you approached the field because “they would get lost in the trees.”
The NTSB determined the probable cause as the pilot’s inadequate preflight planning and subsequent failure to remain clear of power lines while maneuvering low to the ground.
NTSB Identification: CEN14LA211
This April 2014 accident report is provided by the National Transportation Safety Board. Published as an educational tool, it is intended to help pilots learn from the misfortunes of others.