NTSB Identification: FTW97LA106.
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Accident occurred Saturday, February 15, 1997 in ROGERS, AR
Probable Cause Approval Date: 05/30/1997
Aircraft: Cessna 172, registration: N1419Y
Injuries: 1 Serious,1 Minor,2 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.

According to the pilot, he intended to perform a cross-country flight from Paxton, Illinois, to Longview, Texas, with a refueling stop at Bentonville, Arkansas. After 4 hours and 5 minutes of flight, the airplane, 'ran out of fuel over Rogers, Arkansas, approximately 8 miles from Bentonville.' Rogers airport was within gliding distance, but once the airplane got closer to the airport, the pilot did not think that the airplane would be able to 'clear the trees that paralleled the runway to the east so I chose a course to the north where a clearing was.' He then 'discovered the runway was built up on a hill which I could not distinguish from the air.' Rather than risk impacting the crest of the hill, he landed on the side of the hill running 'parallel to the horizontal run of the hill.' During the landing roll, as the airplane rounded the ridge at the west end of the hill, it impacted a drainage ditch. A fuel sample was taken at the accident site, and approximately 1/2 quart of fuel was drained from each fuel tank. According to the 1962 Cessna 172 owner's manual, the range with full fuel (39 useable gallons), at 7,000 feet and 75% power was 4 hours and 6 minutes, with no reserve.

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

the pilot's improper fuel consumption calculations, which resulted in the loss of engine power, due to fuel exhaustion. A factor relating to the accident was: the lack of suitable terrain for a forced landing.

Full narrative available

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