NTSB Identification: LAX98LA186.
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Accident occurred Sunday, June 07, 1998 in EL CAJON, CA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 08/03/2000
Aircraft: Piper PA-28-181, registration: N84451
Injuries: 3 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.

The instructor pilot was departing with two beginning student pilots for a local area flight. The instructor stated that during the initial climb, about 50 to 100 feet above ground level, the engine lost power and he performed a forced landing beyond the departure end of the runway. The airplane was substantially damaged during the forced landing. According to an FAA inspector on scene, during the preflight the fuel gascolator drain may have been left open during the preflight. The flight instructor was counseled by the FAA on preflight procedures.

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

The certified flight instructor's inadequate preflight which led to fuel exhaustion and subsequent loss of engine power. A related factor was the unsuitable terrain.

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