NTSB Identification: LAX03FA100
On February 23, 2003, about 0830 Pacific standard time, a Cessna 172N, N9885J, collided with mountainous terrain near Ely, Nevada. Corporate Air Services was operating the rental airplane under the provisions of 14 CFR Part 91. The private pilot and one passenger sustained fatal injuries; the airplane was destroyed. The personal cross-country flight departed Rifle, Colorado, about 0630 mountain standard time en route to Little River, California. Day visual meteorological conditions prevailed at Ely, the nearest reporting station bearing 350 degrees and 29 miles from the accident site. Weather at the accident site has not been determined. No flight plan had been filed. The primary wreckage was at 38 degrees 49.037 minutes north latitude and 114 degrees 54.587 minutes west longitude.
The operator reported that the pilot was taking a passenger to Little River and planned to return to Rifle the following day. When the flight did not arrive as scheduled, the family alerted the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and an alert notice (ALNOT) was issued. The Air Force Rescue Coordination Center (AFRCC) received emergency locator transmitter (ELT) signals in the vicinity of Ely. Rescue personnel located the wreckage on February 25, 2003.
Search and rescue personnel reported that the airplane came to rest in mountainous terrain about 9,000 feet mean sea level (msl). About 4 feet of snow covered the airplane.