NTSB Identification: FTW98FA291.
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Accident occurred Wednesday, July 01, 1998 in EDGEWOOD, TX
Probable Cause Approval Date: 02/16/2001
Aircraft: Cessna 140A, registration: N9689A
Injuries: 1 Fatal.

NTSB investigators either traveled in support of this investigation or conducted a significant amount of investigative work without any travel, and used data obtained from various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

A witness observed the airplane taxi out and takeoff on runway 13. The witness reported that there were no unusual sounds coming from the engine. Two other witnesses north of the airport reported that they heard the airplane's engine 'sputtering.' The airplane was flying low over the trees at an altitude of approximately 50 to 60 feet above the ground. Both witnesses reported that prior to the airplane starting a turn toward the approach end of runway 13, the engine 'stop[ped].' As the airplane started to turn toward the runway, it 'took a nose dive' and impacted the ground. The fuel line from the gascolator to the carburetor was found fractured and separated from its fitting, which was still attached to the gascolator. An examination of the fuel line by an NTSB metallurgist revealed that, 'the fuel line separated through the flexible hose as a result of extensive wear.' According to entries in maintenance records, the aircraft's last annual inspection was completed on December 1, 1997, about 21.3 hours prior to the accident. Continuity was established to all flight controls.

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

The pilot's failure to maintain minimum required airspeed for flight. Factors were the worn fuel line, which separated, and the failure of the maintenance personnel to locate the worn fuel line during the annual inspection.

Full narrative available

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