NTSB Identification: LAX00FA151.
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Accident occurred Tuesday, April 11, 2000 in Fullerton, CA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 04/15/2003
Aircraft: Beech B36TC, registration: N6791P
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.

The single engine airplane impacted a house after experiencing a loss of control while returning to land. The commercial pilot reported to air traffic controllers that the cabin door came open during takeoff. The pilot was attempting to return the airplane to the departure runway when the air traffic controller heard the pilot's voice say, "Emergency, I've got . . ." Witnesses observed black smoke emanating from the exhaust stack. One witness observed the airplane flying low and slow at a high angle of attack with the landing gear extended. He then observed the airplane stall and spin, rotating 1.5 times before losing site of the airplane. Another witness, who was located near the accident site, stated the engine stopped making noise prior to the accident. The airplane impacted a power line and home in a residential area. No anomalies were noted with the airplane and engine that would have prevented its operation; however, the engine did display signatures of operation with an excessively rich mixture. The auxiliary fuel pump, which was unguarded and located adjacent to the landing gear selector switch, was found in the HI position. Operation with the auxiliary fuel pump in the HI position, with an operative engine-driven fuel pump, can result in a complete loss of engine power once the pilot reduced power for landing.

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

The pilot's failure to maintain adequate airspeed while in the traffic pattern, which resulted in an inadvertent stall/spin. Contributing factor was the pilot's diverted attention with the loss of engine power from his inadvertent activation of the auxiliary fuel pump, and the open cabin door.

Full narrative available

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