CESSNA 208B, MANTEO, N.C., DEC. 25, 2002–At about 1 a.m. EST Cessna N1122Y, registered to Avion Capital Corp. and operated by Telford Aviation, crashed into Croatan Sound near Manteo. The aircraft was in IMC on an instrument flight plan. The ATP-rated pilot was killed and the aircraft was substantially damaged. The flight departed Elizabeth City, N.C., about 25 minutes before the accident occurred.
The pilot was in radio contact with Washington Center and had been cleared for the NDB Runway 05 approach at Dare County Regional Airport (MQI) when it was five miles northeast of the airport. The aircraft disappeared from radar contact when it descended below 2,000 feet about five miles north of the airport while maneuvering for the approach.
Three minutes before the crash the pilot reported to the controller that he was completing the procedure turn and was inbound to the airport. No further transmissions were received from the pilot. When the pilot did not report that he was on the ground, and further radio contact could not be established, controllers initiated search-and-rescue efforts. The wreckage of the airplane was located in the waters of Croatan Sound, about two miles west of MQI, at about 10 o’clock the following morning.