Downdrafts Felled Fossett’s Airplane, NTSB Says

 - July 27, 2009, 8:12 AM

The NTSB’s final report on the Sept. 3, 2007 airplane crash that claimed the life of adventurer Steve Fossett concluded that the American Champion Super Decathlon (N240R) he was flying hit the side of a mountain near Mammoth Lakes, Calif., after “an inadvertent encounter with downdrafts that exceeded the climb capability of the airplane.” According to the NTSB, also contributing to the accident were the high, density altitude and mountainous terrain.