NTSB Identification: ANC96LA103.
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Accident occurred Sunday, July 21, 1996 in KENAI, AK
Probable Cause Approval Date: 02/18/1997
Aircraft: Cessna 172XP, registration: N736LB
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 was exiting a mountain pass when the airplane's engine suddenly lost all power. His attempts at restarting the engine were unsuccessful, and he made an emergency landing on a rough gravel bar. During the engine examination, the #2 cylinder piston connecting rod was found fractured and separated from the crankshaft. The #2 piston connecting rod cap and cap bolts were also fractured and separated from the crankshaft. The #2 piston connecting rod journal was rough and abraded. The piston connecting rod cap bolts had fractured about mid span, and the fracture ends were stretched and necked down. The castellated nuts used to secure the rod cap were found still attached to their respective rod cap bolts. No other mechanical anomalies were discovered during the engine examination. The mechanic who recovered the airplane from the accident site indicated that he drained at least 6 quarts of oil from the engine prior to the recovery.

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

The loss of engine power due to seized piston connecting rod bearings, and subsequent failure of the piston connecting rod cap and fracture of the piston connecting rod. A factor associated with the accident was the rough and uneven emergency landing site.

Full narrative available

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