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N5897P accident description

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Crash location 41.951111°N, 86.368056°W
Nearest city Berrien Springs, MI
41.946434°N, 86.338905°W
1.5 miles away
Tail number N5897P
Accident date 28 Nov 2014
Aircraft type Piper Pa 24-250
Additional details: None

NTSB Factual Report

On November 28, 2014, about 1110 eastern standard time, a Piper PA-24 airplane, N5897P, sustained substantial damage following a total loss of engine power enroute to Andrews University Airpark (C20), Berrien Springs, MI. The pilot, who was the registered owner, co-pilot, and 2 passengers were seriously injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of departure from Richmond Municipal Airport, Richmond, Indiana. The flight was being operated in accordance with 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91, as a personal flight and an instrument flight plan had been filed.

The pilot stated he was planning a 70 minute flight enroute to his destination. The fixed based operator at his departure airport was closed and fuel was not available. He had calculated there was 90 minutes of fuel onboard the airplane based on a previous flight 2 days prior. The pilot reported he encountered weather as he approached his intended destination and decided to circle until the weather cleared. When the weather cleared he lined up on final approach for the runway. The pilot stated that approximately 4 miles from the runway he encountered a total loss of engine power when the airplane ran out of fuel. During the subsequent forced landing, the airplane impacted trees and terrain causing substantial damage to airplane's fuselage and wings.

NTSB Probable Cause

The pilot’s inadequate fuel planning, which resulted in a total loss of engine power due to fuel exhaustion.

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