NTSB Identification: LAX91LA239.
The docket is stored on NTSB microfiche number 44855.
Accident occurred Sunday, June 02, 1991 in BYRON, CA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 05/27/1993
Aircraft: MAULE M-4-220C, registration: N40693
Injuries: 2 Minor,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.

A MAULE M-4-220C COLLIDED WITH A FOUR FOOT HIGH DIRT BANK AFTER A LOSS OF ENGINE POWER DURING TAKEOFF. THE PILOT REPORTED THE ENGINE POWER WAS SURGING DURING THE INITIAL TAKEOFF CLIMB. AT 75 FT AGL THE ENGINE STOPPED. THE ENGINE STARTED AND RAN WITHOUT ANY MALFUNCTIONS DURING A POST ACCIDENT EXAM. THE PILOT SUSPECTED POSSIBLE WATER IN THE FUEL OR SEDIMENTS TEMPORARILY BLOCKING A FUEL LINE. THE AIRPLANE WAS LAST FLOWN 1 WEEK EARLIER FOR 1 HR AND 15 MIN. FUELING RECORDS ESTABLISHED THAT THE AIRPLANE WAS FUELED WITH 8.9 GALLONS OF AVIATION FUEL AFTER THE FLIGHT. THE FUEL CONSUMPTION FOR THE ENGINE AVERAGES IN EXCESS OF 12 GAL/HR. THE FAA RECOMMENDS THAT THE FUEL TANKS BE COMPLETELY FILLED AFTER EACH FLIGHT, OR AT LEAST AFTER THE LAST FLIGHT OF THE DAY. THE REASON IS THAT WHEN AIR IN THE FUEL TANK COOLS, THE MOISTURE IT CONTAINS CONDENSES INTO WATER, AND CONTAMINATES THE FUEL. PILOTS SHOULD TAKE THE NECESSARY STEPS TO ELIMINATE IT DURING PREFLIGHT INSPECTION.

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

THE FAILURE OF THE PILOT-IN-COMMAND TO PERFORM AN ADEQUATE PREFLIGHT INSPECTION BY TAKING THE NECESSARY STEPS TO ELIMINATE WATER CONTAMINATION OF THE AIRPLANE'S FUEL SYSTEM.

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