NTSB Identification: ATL99LA034.
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Accident occurred Monday, December 14, 1998 in SHELBYVILLE, TN
Probable Cause Approval Date: 03/31/2000
Aircraft: Cessna 152, registration: N5144B
Injuries: 1 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 student pilot reported that approximately forty-five minutes into the flight, the engine rpm dropped and subsequently lost power. Attempts by the student pilot to restore full engine power, failed. The student pilot made an emergency landing in an open field. Examination of the airplane disclosed that the nose gear assembly had sheared off and, that the engine firewall had sustained impact damage. The examination also revealed that a fuel line in the vicinity of the chin cowling had also ruptured and an unknown quantity of fuel was spilled. Approximately a quart of liquid was recovered from the fuel system; 90% of the liquid was clear water. Water was also discovered in the carburetor bowl, and the filter assembly. Reportedly the airplane was refueled about two days before the accident, and subsequent to the refueling, the area experienced severe thunderstorm activity. Security of the fuel caps after the refueling was not confirmed. The pilot did not report checking and securing the fuel caps during the preflight inspection.

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

Water contamination of the fuel supply, resulting from the pilot's inadequate preflight inspection.

Full narrative available

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