NTSB Identification: NYC99LA067.
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Accident occurred Friday, February 26, 1999 in SUBLETT, KY
Probable Cause Approval Date: 04/25/2001
Aircraft: Cessna 152, registration: N25856
Injuries: 1 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 pilot checked weather, calculated en route times, and fuel required before departing. He activated his flight plan, requested and received radar traffic advisories, and climbed to an altitude of 7,500 feet msl. Once over the London Airport the right fuel tank was indicating empty, and the left tank was indicating half. During preflight, the pilot calculated that both tanks should be indicating half, but he continued the flight figuring the right gauge was faulty. Approximately 20 miles passed London, the pilot lost radio contact with ATC, and became disorientated. It was night, visibility was approximately 4 miles, and both the right and left fuel tanks indicated empty. The pilot started to doubted his initial assessment that the right gauge was faulty, so decided to make an off airport precautionary landing to a field. While on final, and approximately 50 feet above the ground, the airplane contacted wires and crashed. The pilot had a 130 hours of total flight experience. Five gallons of fuel in the left tank, and 6 gallons in the right tank were found. The commutation radio, navigation radio, transponder and alternator were tested and found to function properly.

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

The pilot's improper decision to continue the flight with a perceived excessive fuel consumption, and delaying his decision to execute a precautionary until night, which resulted in the airplane impacting wires. Factors in the accident were the pilot's lack of total flight experience, and being lost and disoriented.

Full narrative available

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