NTSB Identification: FTW98LA281.
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Accident occurred Saturday, June 20, 1998 in LAS VEGAS, NM
Probable Cause Approval Date: 02/15/2001
Aircraft: Rockwell COMMANDER 112, registration: N1188J
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.

The pilot received his pilot's license on May 11, 1996 and had accumulated 78 hours of flight experience. He recently purchased this complex airplane and had 7.3 hours of experience in it before the accident flight. He was conducting a cross-country flight and diverted south through New Mexico due to turbulence. The pilot stated that his initial time en route was 1.5 hours, however, investigation revealed that he had airborne for 2.5 hours and that the aircraft normally burns 10-14 gallons per hour. He said he lost engine power near Las Vegas, New Mexico, due to 'fuel exhaustion' and landed in soft vegetated terrain. The pilot reported that 'his fuel gauges indicated that he had fuel, so he continued to fly.' He latter reported that he had put 25 gallons of fuel on the airplane before the flight in which the accident occurred.

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

The pilot's improper preflight planning/preparation for a cross country flight resulting in fuel exhaustion and subsequent loss of engine power. Factors were, unsuitable terrain, lack of total aviation experience, and lack of total experience in make/model of aircraft.

Full narrative available

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