NTSB Identification: FTW97IA362.
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Incident occurred Thursday, May 08, 1997 in MUNDAY, TX
Probable Cause Approval Date: 05/21/1998
Aircraft: Ayres S2R-G10, registration: N3298Y
Injuries: 1 Uninjured.

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

During the initial takeoff climb, the agricultural airplane's engine lost power, and the pilot executed a forced landing in a plowed field. The airplane nosed down in the soft ground. Examination of the airplane by the operator revealed that the right wing fuel tank was empty, and the left tank contained approximately 80 gallons of fuel. Both fuel lines leading from the left wing tank to the fuselage header tank were blocked by pellets of what appeared to be silicone rubber. Chemical analysis confirmed that the pellets were composed of silicone rubber. The 1995 model airplane had accumulated 612 hours total time. The operator expressed the opinion that the silicone rubber might have been applied to the gaskets of the wing fuel tank access panels during manufacture of the airplane; however, a representative of the manufacturer stated that the company did not use silicone rubber to seal fuel tanks. An inspection of the manufacturer's production line by FAA personnel revealed no evidence that silicone rubber was being used to seal fuel tanks. The source of the silicone rubber contamination could not be determined.

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

blockage of both fuel lines from the left wing tank to the header tank by silicone rubber contaminants (foreign material), which resulted in fuel starvation. A related factor was the lack of suitable terrain for the forced landing.

Full narrative available

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