NTSB Identification: DEN99LA042.
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Accident occurred Monday, February 22, 1999 in TELLURIDE, CO
Probable Cause Approval Date: 04/20/2001
Aircraft: Beech V35, registration: N345MD
Injuries: 1 Serious,3 Minor.

NTSB investigators may not have traveled in support of this investigation and used data provided by various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

The airplane had been cruising at 16,000 feet and fuel had been drawn from the left tank for one hour. Approximately 30 seconds after the pilot switched the fuel selector valve from the left main to the right tip tank, the engine lost power. The pilot was able to glide the airplane 10 miles to the Telluride Regional Airport, elevation 9,078 feet msl, but struck the ground about 30 feet short of the runway. The tips tanks were last used 16 months before the accident. The tip tank manufacturer said it was possible that trapped air in the tip tank fuel line could have caused the engine to lose power when the pilot moved the fuel selector to the right tip tank, and it was also possible the pilot flooded the engine with excess fuel when she selected LOW BOOST during the restart attempt. The pilot was unaware of the procedure to follow for purging air from the fuel system.

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be:

A loss of engine power due to the ingestion of air in the fuel line, the pilot's failure to purge the fuel line of unwanted air prior to flight as outlined in the Airplane Flight Manual, and inadequate altitude in which to glide to the airport.

Full narrative available

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