NTSB Identification: FTW97LA371.
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Accident occurred Tuesday, September 30, 1997 in SANTA ROSA, NM
Probable Cause Approval Date: 10/30/1998
Aircraft: Siai-Marchetti F.260, registration: N260MT
Injuries: 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.

Approximately 20 minutes before reaching a planned fuel stop at Santa Rosa, NM, the engine lost power. The pilot initiated a forced landing to a dirt road. During the descent, he 'attempted a restart w/opposite wing tank selected;' however, the engine did not start. The pilot reported that his 'last fuel check indicated 1/8 - 1/4 fuel in both wing tanks, wing tip tanks empty.' During the landing roll, the nose landing gear impacted a ditch separating its wheel. The aircraft continued across the dirt road, crossed another ditch, and nosed over. Examination of the aircraft's fuel system revealed that the fuel selector was in the left tip tank position. The main fuel tanks and the wing tip tanks were 'void of fuel,' and 'there were not any fuel stains on the aircraft or the ground.' Only residual fuel was found in the fuel line to the gascolator and in the gascolator, and the carburetor fuel bowl had approximately 0.5 ounce of fuel.

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

improper planning/decision by the pilot, which led to fuel exhaustion, loss of engine power, and a forced landing. A related factor was the lack of suitable terrain for the forced landing.

Full narrative available

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