NTSB Identification: LAX94LA377.
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Accident occurred Sunday, September 25, 1994 in SAN MATEO, CA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 05/16/1995
Aircraft: PIPER PA-32RT-300T, registration: N39658
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 AIRCRAFT LOST ENGINE POWER AFTER TAKEOFF AND WAS FORCED TO LAND ON A RESIDENTIAL STREET. THE ENGINE HAD BEEN OVERHAULED BY AN FAA-CERTIFIED REPAIR STATION 5 MONTHS AND 150 FLIGHT HOURS BEFORE THE ACCIDENT. EXAMINATION OF THE ENGINE MAGNETO REVEALED INTERNAL CORROSION AND ELECTRICAL ARCING AT THE BREAKER POINTS. THE INSULATION ON THE 'P' LEAD WIRE WAS CRACKED ALONG ITS ENTIRE LENGTH EXPOSING BARE WIRE AT ONE POINT. GROUNDING OF THE 'P' LEAD AS A RESULT OF A BARE WIRE TOUCHING THE AIRFRAME WOULD HAVE THE SAME EFFECT AS THE IGNITION SWITCH IN THE OFF POSITION.

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

A deteriorated magneto grounding ('P' lead) and failure of maintenance personnel to detect this condition when the engine was reinstalled in the airframe after overhaul. The lack of suitable terrain for the forced landing was a factor.

Full narrative available

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