NTSB Identification: SEA97LA022.
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Accident occurred Tuesday, October 29, 1996 in ESTACADA, OR
Probable Cause Approval Date: 05/30/1997
Aircraft: Collier Q200, registration: N200CQ
Injuries: 1 Fatal.

NTSB investigators may not have traveled in support of this investigation and used data provided by various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

During a maintenance test flight of a home built aircraft, the pilot apparently initiated an emergency landing on a gravel road. The road was bordered on both sides by tall trees. On the right side of the road, power lines (lower than tree top level) paralleled the road. During the descent, the right canard and right rear wing came in contact with the power lines. The airplane then collided with the road and came to rest off the right side of the road among the trees. Wreckage examination revealed evidence that the butterfly valve in the carburetor was in the closed position, and the throttle stop was positioned approximately 1/8-inch from the stop screw. The throttle arm clamping screw was loose, and the throttle arm rotated easily on the butterfly valve shaft. Mandatory safety wire that was to be applied to the throttle arm clamping screw had not been used, and the safety wire on the throttle arm clamping screw was slack and provided inadequate security. Friends of the pilot reported that approximately one week before the accident, he was having trouble with the fuel mixture; they presumed that the pilot had been making adjustments to the carburetor.

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

inadequate maintenance adjustment by the owner/pilot/mechanic, by not using safety wire to secure the throttle arm clamping screw, which resulted in a loose clamping screw and rotation of the throttle arm with respect to the butterfly valve shaft. The lack of suitable terrain for an emergency landing was a factor.

Full narrative available

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