NTSB Identification: NYC94FA064.
The docket is stored in the Docket Management System (DMS). Please contact Records Management Division
Accident occurred Friday, March 18, 1994 in WINCHESTER, VA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 11/18/1994
Aircraft: SWEARINGEN SA-26AT, registration: N20PT
Injuries: 1 Fatal.

NTSB investigators either traveled in support of this investigation or conducted a significant amount of investigative work without any travel, and used data obtained from various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

WHILE ON APP AT NIGHT, IN VMC, THE LEFT ENG LOST PWR DUE TO FUEL STARVATION. THE PROP WAS NOT FEATHERED, THE L/G WAS LEFT DOWN, AND THE A/C DRIFTED LEFT OF CRS, STRUCK TREES, AND THEN THE GND. ONE GAL OF FUEL WAS DRAINED FROM THE RT WING, ENG, & FUEL LINE. NO FUEL WAS FOUND IN THE LT WING, ENG & FUEL LINE. THE CO-PILOT SAID THE FUEL QTY SYS WAS ERRATIC WITH THE LT SIDE MORE ERRATIC, AND THE RT SIDE READING ABOUT 10 GAL MORE THAN THE LT SIDE. TESTING FOUND THE RT SIDE INDICATED ABOUT 45 GAL MORE THAN WAS PRESENT WHILE THE LT SIDE WAS INOP. THERE WAS NO REQUIREMENT FOR PERIODIC RECALIBRAION OF THE FUEL QTY SYSTEM. THE OWNER/PILOT HAD OPERATED THE A/C ON 32 FLTS, OVER 23 HRS, AND REFUELED 23 TIMES USING PARTIAL FILLS, SINCE HE HAD FULL TANKS. THE PILOT WAS CHECKED OUT 17 MONTHS PRIOR AND THE INSTR SAID THE PILOT WAS FINE, HOWEVER, HE WAS CAUTIONED HIM TO ENROLL IN RECURRENT TRAINING. THERE WAS NO RECORD HE DID. THE PILOT HAD RECEIVED AN FAA CHECKRIDE 19 MONTHS PRIOR TO THE ACCIDENT, WHICH HE PASSED.

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

THE PILOT'S DECISION TO OPERATE THE AIRPLANE WITH KNOWN DEFICIENCIES IN THE FUEL QUANTITY MEASURING SYSTEM WHICH RESULTED IN A POWER LOSS DUE TO FUEL STARVATION, FOLLOWED BY IMPROPER EMERGENCY PROCEDURES WHICH RESULTED IN A LOSS OF CONTROL INFLIGHT AND UNCONTROLLED CONTACT WITH THE GROUND. FACTORS WERE THE LACK OF A REQUIREMENT FOR PERIODIC CALIBRATION OF THE FUEL QUANTITY MEASURING SYSTEM FROM THE MANUFACTURER, AND THE ERRATIC AND INACCURATE FUEL QUANTITY MEASURING SYSTEM.

Full narrative available

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