Beech King Air 90, Rawlins, Wyo., Jan. 11, 2005–The NTSB said the air ambulance accident was caused by “the pilot’s inadvertent flight into adverse weather [severe icing] conditions, resulting in an aerodynamic stall.” A contributing factor was the pilot’s inadequate planning for the forecast icing.
The Yampa Valley air ambulance flew to Rawlins Municipal Airport/Harvey Field (RWL) to pick up a patient. Approaching RWL, the pilot made a right turn outbound to maneuver for the final approach to Runway 22.
Inbound, the King Air hit mountainous terrain about 2.5 nm from the airport. The crash occurred at 9:45 p.m. The position of the airplane on impact was consistent with an aerodynamic stall.
The airplane was found to have clear ice up to 1.5 inches thick on the vertical stabilizer, both wings, the right landing gear tire and the right propeller. The ceiling was 1,100 and 1,800 agl, visibility 2.5 sm, light snow and mist, temperature 33 degrees F and dew point 30 F. A current airmet reported “occasional moderate rime or mixed icing in clouds and precipitation between the freezing level (the surface) and FL 220.”