NTSB Identification: BFO94LA062.
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Accident occurred Saturday, April 09, 1994 in GLOUCESTER, VA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 01/12/1995
Aircraft: PIPER PA-28-140, registration: N857DG
Injuries: 2 Uninjured.

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 STATED THAT THE ENGINE BEGAN TO LOSE POWER AS THE AIRPLANE WAS DESCENDING FOR LANDING. REALIZING HE COULD NOT LAND AT THE INTENDED DESTINATION, THE PILOT EXECUTED A FORCED LANDING. DURING THE LANDING, THE AIRPLANE STRUCK A TREE STUMP AND WAS SUBSTANTIALLY DAMAGED. THE PILOT STATED THAT THE AIRPLANE HAD FLOWN AT LEAST 4.5 HOURS ON THREE SEPARATE FLIGHTS SINCE ITS LAST REFUELING. HE STATED THAT HE VISUALLY CHECKED THE FUEL LEVELS BEFORE THE ACCIDENT FLIGHT, BUT WAS UNABLE TO DETERMINE HOW MUCH FUEL WAS AVAILABLE. AN EXAMINATION OF THE ENGINE DID NOT REVEAL ANY EVIDENCE OF THE PRESENCE OF FUEL. THE EXAMINATION ALSO DID NOT REVEAL ANY EVIDENCE OF PRE-IMPACT MECHANICAL DEFICIENCIES. THE PILOT FLEW THE AIRPLANE UNTIL ALL USABLE FUEL WAS EXHAUSTED.

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

THE PILOT-IN-COMMAND'S FAILURE TO PERFORM ADEQUATE PRE-FLIGHT INSPECTIONS AND PLANNING FOR THE FLIGHT, AND HIS FAILURE TO REFUEL THE AIRPLANE. THIS LED TO FUEL EXHAUSTION OF THE ENGINE AND A FORCED LANDING.

Full narrative available

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