NTSB Identification: CHI96LA020.
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Accident occurred Thursday, October 26, 1995 in GOOSE LAKE, IA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 04/18/1996
Aircraft: CESSNA 180A, registration: N185F
Injuries: 1 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/OWNER WAS FLYING AN AIRPLANE THAT HAD RECENTLY UNDERGONE A COMPLETE OVERHAUL OF THE ENGINE AND REPLACEMENT OF THE RIGHT FUEL TANK BLADDER. AFTER BEING EN ROUTE FOR ABOUT 1 HOUR AND 50 MINUTES, THE ENGINE STOPPED RUNNING WITH NO WARNING. DURING A SUBSEQUENT FORCED LANDING IN A CORN FIELD, THE AIRPLANE NOSED OVER AND WAS DAMAGED. INSPECTION OF THE AIRPLANE REVEALED A WRINKLED RIGHT BLADDER FUEL TANK AND A FUEL STAIN AFT OF THE LEFT FUEL CAP. VERY LITTLE FUEL WAS FOUND ONBOARD. FOUR GALLONS OF FUEL WAS ADDED TO THE LEFT TANK AND THE ENGINE RAN SUCCESSFULLY. THE AIRPLANE HAD BEEN MODIFIED WITH SUPPLEMENTAL TYPE CERTIFICATE (STC) SA4121SW. HOWEVER, THERE WAS NO MAINTENANCE ENTRY IN THE AIRPLANE'S LOGBOOK REGARDING THE MAINTENANCE PERFORMED TO COMPLY WITH ALL CONDITIONS OF THE STC. CESSNA SERVICE BULLETIN (SB) SEB88-1 WAS APPLICABLE TO THE STC. AN INSTRUCTION OF THE SB WAS ' . . . TO ADD A STRIP OF FOAM SEAL AROUND THE WING STRUT UNDER THE UPPER STRUT CUFF. THIS SEALING PREVENTS AIR FLOWING INSIDE THE CUFF AND DISRUPTION OF PROPER FUEL VENTING DUE TO VORTEX GENERATION FORWARD OF THE VENT TUBE . . .' THE SB ALSO NOTED THAT EXCESSIVE GAPS BETWEEN THE WING STRUT AND STRUT CUFF COULD CAUSE FUEL BLADDER TANK WRINKLING, UNSNAPPING AND INACCURATE FUEL QUANTITY INDICATIONS.
The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be: inadequate maintenance, inadequate preflight by the pilot, and a loose fuel tank cap that allowed siphoning of fuel, buckling of the right fuel bladder, fuel exhaustion, and loss of engine power. Factors relating to the accident were: darkness, and the soft terrain and crop in the emergency landing area. Full narrative available
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