NTSB Identification: NYC93FA133.
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Accident occurred Tuesday, June 29, 1993 in VESTAL, NY
Probable Cause Approval Date: 09/13/1994
Aircraft: American General Aircraft AA-1, registration: N5932L
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 FLIGHT INSTRUCTOR AND STUDENT PILOT DEPARTED ON A LOCAL TRAINING FLIGHT. TEN MINUTES AFTER DEPARTURE, THE AIRPLANE WAS OBSERVED IN A DESCENDING SPIRAL, WITH THE ENGINE RUNNING, OVER AN AREA WHERE FORCED LANDINGS WERE PRACTICED. A WITNESS OBSERVED THE AIRPLANE LEVELING OFF AS IT WENT BEHIND A HILL TOP, THEN HEARD THE AIRPLANE IMPACT THE GROUND. ANOTHER WITNESS HEARD THE ENGINE BACKFIRING, FOLLOWED BY THE SOUND OF IMPACT. POST ACCIDENT INVESTIGATION REVEALED THE STUDENT PILOT/OWNER OF THE AIRPLANE WAS PERFORMING HIS OWN MAINTENANCE. THIS INCLUDED CHANGING ENGINE PISTONS AND RINGS. NUMEROUS FUEL STAINS WERE OBSERVED OVER SEVERAL COMPONENTS OF THE ENGINE. THE CARBURETOR MIXTURE SCREW WAS SET TO THE MAXIMUM LEAN CONDITION. DUCT TAPE AND ELECTRICAL TAPE HAD BEEN USED EXTENSIVELY FOR REPAIRS ON THE AIR INDUCTION SYSTEM.

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

THE LOSS OF ENGINE POWER DUE TO FUEL STARVATION FROM A FUEL LEAK CAUSED BY INADEQUATE MAINTENANCE BY UNQUALIFIED PERSONNEL, THE PILOT'S FAILURE TO MAINTAIN ADEQUATE AIRSPEED, WHICH RESULTED IN AN INADVERTENT STALL AND COLLISION WITH THE GROUND.

Full narrative available

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