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N9442L accident description

Kansas map... Kansas list
Crash location 38.938055°N, 95.099166°W
Nearest city Eudora, KS
38.891672°N, 95.111359°W
3.3 miles away
Tail number N9442L
Accident date 06 Aug 2004
Aircraft type American Aviation Corp. (AAC) AA-1A
Additional details: None

NTSB Factual Report

On August 6, 2004, approximately 0930 central daylight time, an American Aviation AA-1A, N9442L, owned and piloted by a private pilot, was substantially damaged during a forced landing following a loss of engine power near Eudora, Kansas. The personal flight was operating under 14 CFR Part 91 without a flight plan. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time. The pilot and passenger reported minor injuries. The local flight departed the New Century AirCenter Airport (IXD), Olathe, Kansas, about 0900.

The pilot reported that they were returning to IXD after the local flight when the engine began to run rough. The airplane was established in a descent, passing through about 2,500 feet mean sea level at the time. He stated that he leveled at 1,200 feet above ground level and flew along a river for a short time. He stated that he moved the mixture control to full rich, however, the engine quit completely.

The pilot stated he saw an open field to his right and set-up for a forced landing. He noted that the airplane "wanted to fall out of the sky." He reported that due to the low altitude, he did not switch fuel tanks or attempt to determine the cause of the loss of engine power. The pilot commented that he had switched to the right fuel tank on return to IXD.

The pilot stated the airplane touched down in the field on the main landing gear. He attempted to hold the nose wheel off the ground as long as possible, however, when it dropped the airplane nosed over. The airplane came to rest inverted.

A post-accident examination was conducted by a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) inspector. He observed fuel leaking out of the left tank cap and when he loosened the cap fuel began pouring out of the tank. He reported the right fuel tank cap was secure and when he removed it, the tank appeared to be empty. The inspector did not observe any evidence of fuel on the ground at the accident site. He noted that the cockpit fuel selector was set to the right tank at the time of his examination. Inspection of the fuel system did not reveal any anomalies. No debris was observed in samples taken from the system.

The FAA Type Certificate Data Sheet for the airplane stated that total fuel capacity was 24 gallons in 2 wing tanks. Unusable fuel was listed as 2 gallons total. FAA records indicate the original Lycoming O-235-C1C (108 horsepower) engine had been replaced by an O-320-E2D (150 horsepower) engine under Supplemental Type Certificate SA24775SW.

NTSB Probable Cause

A loss of engine power due to fuel starvation resulting from the pilot's selection of a fuel tank with an insufficient quantity remaining.

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