NTSB Identification: FTW97LA307.
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Accident occurred Saturday, August 09, 1997 in EAGLE, CO
Probable Cause Approval Date: 06/26/1998
Aircraft: Cessna T210, registration: N1119W
Injuries: 2 Serious,1 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.

During initial climb after takeoff for a cross-country flight, the engine began to run rough. The pilot turned the aircraft back toward the airport, but the engine lost all power, and a forced landing was made in a field. During the landing, the left fuel tank ruptured, a fire erupted, and the aircraft was destroyed. The pilot and one passenger received serious injuries; the other passenger and a dog were not injured. Examination of the engine revealed no evidence of a mechanical failure or malfunction, but water was found in the fuel injection distribution valve, and the valve was free of corrosion. The aircraft had been parked for 3 days with partially filled fuel tanks in an environment, in which, the temperature variance over a 24 hour period averaged 30 to 40 degrees. There was evidence that with the temperature variance, condensation may have occurred in the partially filled fuel tanks. The pilot said he was aware of a possible condensation problem and had ordered fuel upon arrival. The FBO, however, waited 3 days before servicing the aircraft. The pilot also said he drained the sumps during his preflight and found no contaminates or water.

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

water contamination of the fuel, which led to a total loss of engine power and a forced landing. Factors relating to the accident were: the delay in refueling the aircraft by the FBO, which allowed condensation to form in the fuel tanks, and inadequate preflight by the pilot.

Full narrative available

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