NTSB Identification: LAX93LA200.
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Accident occurred Wednesday, May 05, 1993 in BIGGS, CA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 08/30/1994
Aircraft: GRUMMAN 164A, registration: N5249
Injuries: 1 Fatal.

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 HAD JUST DEPARTED AN AIRSTRIP TO BEGIN AN AERIAL APPLICATION OF RICE SEED ON ADJACENT FIELDS. AFTER DEPARTURE, WITNESSES OBSERVED THE AIRPLANE AT ABOUT 50 FEET ABOVE THE GROUND, WHILE EN ROUTE TO A FIELD. THEY REPORTED HEARING THE ENGINE 'POP' AND SPUTTER. THE PILOT MADE A FORCED LANDING TO AN OPEN FIELD, NEXT TO WATER COVERED FIELDS AND BORDERED BY AN IRRIGATION DITCH. THE AIRPLANE STRUCK THE INSIDE SLOPE OF A RAISED LEVEE AND NOSED OVER. A POST-CRASH FIRE ERUPTED AROUND THE ENGINE, WHICH WAS LIMITED TO THE ENGINE AREA. AN EXAMINATION OF THE ENGINE REVEALED THE NUMBER 2 CYLINDER HAD FAILED AT THE TOP OF THE CYLINDER BARREL.

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

FAILURE OF THE NUMBER 2 ENGINE CYLINDER. A FACTOR RELATED TO THE ACCIDENT WAS THE LACK OF ALTITUDE FOR THE PILOT TO MAKE A SUCCESSFULL FORCED LANDING.

Full narrative available

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