NTSB Identification: MIA96LA142.
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Accident occurred Monday, May 20, 1996 in JACKSONVILLE, FL
Probable Cause Approval Date: 12/16/1996
Aircraft: Piper PA-32, registration: N9164B
Injuries: 1 Serious,2 Minor.

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 made an emergency landing to an airport after informing ATC that the engine had sustained a partial loss of engine power. Witnesses observed the airplane touch down extremely fast, long, and initiate a go-around. The airplane was observed in a nose high, climbing right turn, and a lack of airspeed. The nose dropped down, and the airplane collided with the trees and terrain in a nose down attitude. Disassembly of the engine revealed the piston plugs on the Nos.3 and 5 cylinders were installed on the forward sides of both pistons. This allowed the unprotected ends of the pins to rub against the cylinder walls. The remaining cylinder assemblies were correctly installed. Review of the engine logbook revealed the engine had not been disassembled since assembly by the manufacturer.

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

The pilot's failure to maintain airspeed (VSO) while maneuvering during a go-around, resulting in an inadvertent stall and subsequent in-flight collision with terrain. Contributing to the accident was the pilot's failure to achieve the proper touchdown point during an emergency landing, his decision to make a go-around with a known mechanical deficiency (partial loss of engine power) due to the improper installation of the piston plugs during assembly of the engine by the manufacturer.

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