NTSB Identification: IAD00LA049.
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Accident occurred Thursday, June 08, 2000 in ERIE, PA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 05/08/2001
Aircraft: Beech BE-55, registration: N777K
Injuries: 1 Minor.

NTSB investigators may have traveled in support of this investigation and used data provided by various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

The pilot flew the twin engine airplane from Erie, Pennsylvania, to Concord, North Carolina, to Dunkirk, New York. Prior to departure from Dunkirk, the pilot declined fuel servicing, and did not visually check the fuel tanks. The pilot stated that when the engines were started the left fuel indicator was between the top of the 'empty' white arc and 1/4 tank, and the right fuel indicator was between 1/4 and 1/2 tank. After a 25 minute flight, while on a straight in approach to Erie, the pilot noticed that the left fuel indicator was in the white arc and prepared for an engine failure. The pilot turned the right fuel selector handle one turn to the left in an attempt to cross-feed fuel from the right tank to both engines. Shortly thereafter, the pilot felt an engine problem and pushed all the controls full forward; however, he did not remember exactly what happened after that point. The airplane descended through trees and came to rest between two buildings. According to a fuel placard, when the right fuel selector handle was turned one click to the left, the selector was in the cross-feed mode, which allowed fuel from the left tank to cross-feed to the right engine. Another fuel placard said, 'Do not take-off if fuel quantity indication gauges indicate in yellow arc or with less than 13 gallons in each wing system.'

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

the pilot's improper fuel management which resulted in fuel starvation and a loss of power to both engines. A factor was the pilot's inadequate pre-flight planning and takeoff with inadequate fuel for the flight.

Full narrative available

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