NTSB Identification: NYC98LA132.
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Accident occurred Wednesday, June 24, 1998 in GEORGIA, VT
Probable Cause Approval Date: 02/15/2001
Aircraft: Extra Flugzeugbau FLUGZEUGBAU EA260, registration: N148GC
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.
After about 40 minutes of flight the pilot stated that the engine started producing 'very limited' power. The main fuel tank gauge indicated empty and the auxiliary fuel tank gauge, taken off the left tank, showed 1/4 to 1/3 full. The pilot turned on the boost pump, which had no effect, then made a forced landing to a field. During touchdown, the left main landing gear encountered a hole and collapsed. The wing auxiliary fuel tanks feed the main tank with gravity fuel lines. The left and main fuel tanks were found empty, and the right tank had about 7 gallons in it. The gravity fuel line from the right tank was disconnected from the main fuel tank, but no fuel flowed from the line. However, when the right tank vent line was removed, fuel flowed from the gravity fuel line. When a thumb was placed over the hole where the fuel vent line had been, fuel once again stopped flowing. The pilot stated there was an inordinate amount of mud daubers in the region due to heavy spring rains. When asked why he continued to fly the airplane when the main fuel tank gauge read zero, the pilot stated that the fuel gauges were unreliable and he used timing to determine fuel consumption.
The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be: The pilot's inadequate inflight decision and the loss of engine power due to a blocked vent line. A contributing factor was an unreliable fuel gauge. Full narrative available
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