NTSB Identification: LAX94FA257.
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Accident occurred Wednesday, June 15, 1994 in CARLSBAD, CA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 04/25/1995
Aircraft: CESSNA 421C, registration: N421AG
Injuries: 2 Fatal,1 Serious.

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.

ABOUT 2 MINUTES AFTER TAKEOFF, THE PILOT DECLARED AN EMERGENCY, STATING THAT HE HAD LOST AN ENGINE AND NEEDED TO RETURN TO THE AIRPORT. THE AIRPLANE DESCENDED INTO ROUGH, BRUSH-COVERED TERRAIN AND THEN STRUCK A LARGE DIRT BERM, ABOUT 1-1/2 MILES NORTHEAST OF THE DEPARTURE AIRPORT. EXAMINATION OF THE ENGINES DID NOT REVEAL ANY OBVIOUS MECHANICAL MALFUNCTION. THE FUEL WAS CORRECT. COMBUSTION CHAMBER SIGNATURES INDICATED THAT THE ENGINES WERE OPERATED AT A LEAN OR MILD DETONATION CONDITION. THE FLAPS WERE EXTENDED ABOUT 30 DEGREES AND THE LANDING GEAR WAS RETRACTED. THE SURVIVING PASSENGER COULD NOT RECALL ANY DRAMATIC ENGINE PROBLEMS, ONLY THAT THE AIRPLANE COULD NOT MAINTAIN ALTITUDE. THE PILOT AND FRONT SEAT PASSENGER WERE NOT WEARING SHOULDER HARNESSES.

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

A LOSS OF ENGINE POWER FOR UNDETERMINED REASONS. THE PILOT'S FAILURE TO RAISE THE FLAPS AND MAINTAIN ALTITUDE WERE FACTORS IN THE ACCIDENT.

Full narrative available

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