NTSB Identification: CHI92LA071.
The docket is stored on NTSB microfiche number 45993.
Accident occurred Monday, January 13, 1992 in GRAND RAPIDS, MN
Probable Cause Approval Date: 08/13/1993
Aircraft: PIPER PA-23-150, registration: N255W
Injuries: 2 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 PILOT STATED THAT DURING CRUISE FLIGHT THE LEFT ENGINE BEGAN TO RUN ROUGH AND THEN LOST POWER COMPLETELY. WHEN ATTEMPTS TO RESTART WERE UNSUCCESSFUL, HE FEATHERED THE PROPELLER AND TURNED TOWARDS THE NEAREST AIRPORT TO LAND. HE EXTENDED THE LANDING GEAR WHEN THE AIRPLANE WAS ABOUT ONE MILE FROM THE RUNWAY THRESHOLD, BUT DID NOT GET A GEAR DOWN AND LOCKED INDICATION. WITH ENGINE DRIVEN HYDRAULIC PRESSURE UNAVAILABLE FOR GEAR EXTENSION, EMERGENCY MANUAL GEAR EXTENSION IS REQUIRED. THE PILOT STATED HE DID NOT HAVE TIME FOR MANUAL GEAR EXTENSION, AND JUDGED A GO-AROUND TO BE INADVISABLE. HE SIDE-STEPPED AND LANDED ON THE SNOW-COVERED GROUND ADJACENT TO THE RUNWAY. THE PARTIALLY EXTENDED LANDING GEAR COLLAPSED UPON TOUCHDOWN AND THE AIRPLANE CAME TO A STOP NOSE DOWN IN THE SNOW. THE LOSS OF ENGINE POWER WAS DUE TO A FAILED VALVE IN THE NUMBER 3 CYLINDER.

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

THE PILOT'S LACK OF FAMILIARITY WITH AIRCRAFT SYSTEMS WHICH RESULTED IN HIS FAILURE TO EXTEND THE LANDING GEAR BY THE ALTERNATE SYSTEM. A FACTOR WAS THE LOSS OF ENGINE POWER.

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