NTSB Identification: NYC91FA230.
The docket is stored on NTSB microfiche number 45391.
Accident occurred Saturday, September 07, 1991 in TRANQUILITY, NJ
Probable Cause Approval Date: 03/02/1993
Aircraft: BOEING PT-17, registration: N3721C
Injuries: 1 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.

SHORTLY AFFTER TAKEOFF, THE ENGINE LOST POWER. THE PILOT MADE A SHALLOW RIGHT TURN, APPARENTLY IN PREPARATION FOR A FORCED LANDING IN A FIELD. THE ENGINE STARTED RUNNING AGAIN, AND THE PILOT INITIATED A LEFT TURN AS IF TO TURN BACK TOWARD THE RUNWAY. DURING THE TURN, THE ENGINE LOST POWER AGAIN. THE AIRCRAFT THEN ENTERED A STEEP DESCENT AND CRASHED. THE CAUSE OF THE LOSS OF ENGINE POWER COULD NOT BE DETERMINED. AT THE AIRPORT WHERE N3721C HAD BEEN PARKED, SEVERAL PILOTS REPORTED INSECTS NESTS IN FUEL VENTS, CAUSING BLOCKAGE OF THESE OPENINGS.

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

LOSS OF ENGINE POWER FOR AN UNDETERMINED REASON, AND FAILURE OF THE PILOT TO MAINTAIN ADEQUATE AIRSPEED, WHILE MANEUVERING TO LAND, WHICH RESULTED IN A STALL. THE LACK OF ALTITUDE FOR A RECOVERY FROM THE STALL WAS A RELATED FACTOR.

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