NTSB Identification: LAX95FA119.
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Accident occurred Sunday, February 26, 1995 in SAN JOSE, CA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 10/26/1995
Aircraft: BELLANCA 7ECA, registration: N9198L
Injuries: 2 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.

THE PILOT WAS PRACTICING TOUCH-AND-GO TAKEOFFS AND LANDINGS. THE PILOT STATED THAT DURING THE LAST TAKEOFF, ABOUT 900 FT AGL, THE ENGINE '...SPUTTERED AND THEN LOST POWER...', AND THE AIRPLANE'S NOSE DROPPED. GROUND WITNESSES REPORTED THAT THE AIPLANE WAS CLIMBING AT A HIGH ANGLE-OF-ATTACK WHEN THE ENGINE BEGAN TO SPUTTER. THE LEFT WING ABRUPTLY ROTATED ABOUT THE AIRPLANE'S LONGITUDINAL AXIS, WITH THE NOSE SIMULTANEOUSLY PITCHING DOWN TO A NEAR-VERTICAL ATTITUDE. THE AIRPLANE IMPACTED THE GROUND IN A LEFT SPIN. THE PROPELLER SEPARATED AT IMPACT; BLADE DAMAGE WAS INDICATIVE OF THE ENGINE PRODUCING POWER AT IMPACT. ENGINE EXAMINATION SHOWED THAT IT WAS CAPABLE OF PRODUCING POWER. THE AIRPLANE IS EQUIPPED WITH A GRAVITY-FED FUEL SYSYTEM. A CFI, WHO INSTRUCTS IN THE 7ECA, STATED THAT IT IS POSSIBLE TO SUSTAIN A MOMENTARY LOSS OF POWER DURING CLIMB IF THE PILOT ABRUPTLY PUSHES THE STICK FORWARD CREATING A ZERO TO ONE NEGATIVE G. THE ENGINE WOULD RESTART WHEN A POSITIVE G LOADING OCCURS.

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

THE PILOT'S IMPROPER CLIMB ATTITUDE WHICH RESULTED IN A MOMENTARY LOSS OF ENGINE POWER DUE TO FUEL STARVATION.

Full narrative available

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