NTSB Identification: MIA93FA065.
The docket is stored on NTSB microfiche number 52252.
Accident occurred Monday, February 08, 1993 in AGUADILLA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 11/15/1993
Aircraft: FORNEY ERCOUPE F-1, registration: N7555C
Injuries: 2 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.

THE DAY BEFORE THE ACCIDENT FLT, 12 GALLONS OF FUEL WAS ADDED TO THE FUEL TANKS & THE AIRPLANE WAS FLOWN THREE TIMES. THE ACCIDENT FLIGHT DEPARTED WITH AN UNKNOWN QUANTITY OF FUEL & WHILE MANEUVERING, THE ENGINE QUIT DUE TO FUEL EXHAUSTION. DURING THE EMERGENCY DESCENT, ONE OF THE TWO OCCUPANTS APPLIED FULL UP ELEVATOR CONTROL AT AN AIRSPEED ABOVE MANEUVERING SPEED (VA) WHICH CAUSED BOTH FORWARD WING SPARS TO FAIL IN THE POSITIVE DIRECTION. THE AIRPLANE DESCENDED NEAR VERTICAL AND IMPACTED THE GROUND IN A NOSE-LOW ATTITUDE. EXAM OF THE AIRPLANE AT THE ACCIDENT SITE REVEALED NO EVIDENCE OF FLIGHT CONTROL PREIMPACT FAILURE OR MALFUNCTION. EXAM OF THE FUEL SYSTEM REVEALED NO EVIDENCE OF FUEL. METALLURGICAL EXAMINATION OF THE FRACTURE SURFACES OF THE WING SPARS REVEALED NO EVIDENCE OF PREEXISTING CRACKS OR CORROSION. THE AIRPLANE HAD BEEN OPERATED FOR APPROXIMATELY 30 MINUTES SINCE DEPARTURE. THE STUDENT PLT IN THE LEFT SEAT WAS THE ONLY OCCUPANT WHO WAS AUTHORIZED TO FLY THE AIRPLANE. NO DETERMINATION COULD BE MADE AS TO WHY THE PRIVATE PILOT RATED PASSENGER WAS IN THE AIRPLANE.

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

EXCESSIVE ELEVATOR CONTROL INPUT BY AN UNKNOWN OCCUPANT AT AN AIRSPEED ABOVE MANEUVERING SPEED WHICH CAUSED BOTH FORWARD WING SPARS TO FAIL. CONTRIBUTING TO THE ACCIDENT WAS FUEL EXHAUSTION DUE TO POOR IN FLIGHT PLANNING/DECISION BY THE PILOT-IN-COMMAND AND HIS LACK OF TOTAL EXPERIENCE.

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