|37000 Feet||Browse and search NASA's
Aviation Safety Reporting System
|Local Time Of Day||1801 To 2400|
|Locale Reference||airport : sba.airport|
|Altitude||msl single value : 1000|
|Controlling Facilities||tower : sba.tower|
|Operator||general aviation : personal|
|Make Model Name||Skyhawk 172/Cutlass 172|
|Flight Phase||descent : approach|
|Route In Use||approach : traffic pattern|
|Function||flight crew : single pilot|
|Qualification||pilot : cfi|
pilot : atp
pilot : flight engineer
|Experience||flight time last 90 days : 200|
flight time total : 16700
flight time type : 200
|Anomaly||inflight encounter : vfr in imc|
inflight encounter : weather
|Independent Detector||other flight crewa|
|Resolutory Action||none taken : anomaly accepted|
Flight Crew Human Performance
My desire to get night current outweighed my better judgement in the face of deteriorating WX. Although the metar and taf obtained through the AFSS prior to flight indicated favorable conditions; the dew on the wings at preflight and temperature/dew point spread on the ATIS should have clued me in to the possibility of an earlier appearance of low stratus/fog. With right angle; intersecting runways; I (with tower approval) varied my pattern and runway to turn from the stratus as I realized it would be impossible to maintain the required VFR cloud separation. Although a special VFR clearance (I had current IFR qualifications) would have better ensured my legality as far as cloud separation; the safer option would have been to postpone my effort to another day; rather than aggressive maneuvering using instrument and outside references to maintain visual contact with the airport.
Original NASA ASRS Text
Title: EXPERIENCED PLT OF C172 ENCOUNTERS DETERIORATING WX DURING PATTERN WORK TO MAINTAIN NIGHT QUALIFICATION.
Narrative: MY DESIRE TO GET NIGHT CURRENT OUTWEIGHED MY BETTER JUDGEMENT IN THE FACE OF DETERIORATING WX. ALTHOUGH THE METAR AND TAF OBTAINED THROUGH THE AFSS PRIOR TO FLT INDICATED FAVORABLE CONDITIONS; THE DEW ON THE WINGS AT PREFLT AND TEMP/DEW POINT SPREAD ON THE ATIS SHOULD HAVE CLUED ME IN TO THE POSSIBILITY OF AN EARLIER APPEARANCE OF LOW STRATUS/FOG. WITH R ANGLE; INTERSECTING RWYS; I (WITH TWR APPROVAL) VARIED MY PATTERN AND RWY TO TURN FROM THE STRATUS AS I REALIZED IT WOULD BE IMPOSSIBLE TO MAINTAIN THE REQUIRED VFR CLOUD SEPARATION. ALTHOUGH A SPECIAL VFR CLRNC (I HAD CURRENT IFR QUALIFICATIONS) WOULD HAVE BETTER ENSURED MY LEGALITY AS FAR AS CLOUD SEPARATION; THE SAFER OPTION WOULD HAVE BEEN TO POSTPONE MY EFFORT TO ANOTHER DAY; RATHER THAN AGGRESSIVE MANEUVERING USING INSTRUMENT AND OUTSIDE REFERENCES TO MAINTAIN VISUAL CONTACT WITH THE ARPT.
Data retrieved from NASA's ASRS site as of January 2009 and automatically converted to unabbreviated mixed upper/lowercase text. This report is for informational purposes with no guarantee of accuracy. See NASA's ASRS site for official report.