NTSB Identification: CHI98LA338.
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Accident occurred Thursday, September 10, 1998 in INT'L FALLS, MN
Probable Cause Approval Date: 02/16/2001
Aircraft: Piper PA-28-180, registration: N7965W
Injuries: 2 Serious.

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 reported the airplane experienced fuel exhaustion during the cross country flight. The airplane contacted a pine tree during the forced landing, separating the right wing from the airplane. The airplane then descended to impact with the terrain. Post accident inspection of the airplane failed to reveal any fuel on or around the airplane. No mechanical failure/malfunction was found which would have resulted in the fuel exhaustion.

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

inaccurate preflight planning which resulted in an insufficient fuel supply and the subsequent fuel exhaustion. A factor associated with the accident was the tree which the airplane contacted during the forced landing.

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