NTSB Identification: MIA00LA008.
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Accident occurred Saturday, October 16, 1999 in BELL BUCKLE, TN
Probable Cause Approval Date: 03/02/2001
Aircraft: Eddie A. Smith KR-2, registration: N85ES
Injuries: 2 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.

Five gallons of fuel were added before the flight departed; after departure the flight proceeded to an airport located approximately 19 nautical miles away where a touch-and-go landing was observed. While flying northbound, northeast of the airport, witnesses heard the engine 'spittering and sputtering.' The airplane was then observed to turn to the left, followed by hearing the engine quit. They then observed the airplane in a nose low attitude, spinning and lost sight due to obstructions. Examination of the accident site by FAA inspectors revealed that the airplane descended vertical with little forward movement. A slight odor of fuel was noted in the damaged fuel tank, but no fuel was found; and no evidence of hydraulic action of the fuel tank was noted. No evidence of flight control preimpact failure or malfunction was noted. A seatbelt was not available for the right seat occupant, and replacement of the retractable main landing gear with a fixed type gear was performed but new weight and balance sheet was not located and the work performed was not documented in the aircraft maintenance records. Weight calculations performed indicate that the airplane was approximately 3 pounds over maximum design gross weight at the time of the accident.

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

The poor in-flight planning decision by the pilot-in-command for continuing the flight with inadequate fuel supply and the inadvertent stall by the pilot-in-command following total loss of engine power due to fuel exhaustion. Findings in the accident were the pilot's intentional operation of the airplane with a passenger without providing a restraint system to that person, and operation of the airplane in an over gross weight condition.

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