NTSB Identification: BFO94LA067.
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Accident occurred Sunday, April 17, 1994 in BUTLER, PA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 01/25/1995
Aircraft: PIPER PA-22, registration: N9183D
Injuries: 2 Serious.

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 WAS DOING A SALES DEMONSTRATION FLIGHT AND THE PROSPECTIVE BUYER WAS ABOARD. AS PART OF THE DEMONSTRATION, THE PILOT MADE A LOW PASS OVER THE RUNWAY AND THEN HE ENTERED A LEFT DOWNWIND. AS HE TURNED DOWNWIND, THE ENGINE LOST POWER. THE PILOT FORCED LANDED IN A FIELD, BUT THE AIRPLANE STRUCK TREES, AND CARTWHEELED ACROSS THE GROUND. EXAMINATION OF THE AIRPLANE REVEALED THE FUEL STRAINER AND CARBURETOR FUEL BOWL, RESPECTIVELY, HAD TWO AND ONE OUNCE OF FUEL. THE LEFT TANK HAD 8.5 GALLONS OF FUEL. A PLACARD THAT STATED 'NO TAKE-OFF ON RIGHT TANK WITH LESS THAN 1/3 TANK' WAS OVER THE RIGHT FUEL GAGE.

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

The pilot's failure to select the proper fuel tank, which resulted in fuel starvation and the loss of engine power.

Full narrative available

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