NTSB Identification: LAX00LA247.
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Accident occurred Thursday, June 29, 2000 in CHESTER, CA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 10/17/2001
Aircraft: Piper PA-32-260, registration: N933AC
Injuries: 2 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 single engine aircraft lost power at 150 feet agl on takeoff climb and subsequently ditched in a lake off the end of the runway. The aircraft had four fuel tanks that could be individually selected to supply fuel to the engine. The pilot reported fueling the four tanks to capacity on the morning of the accident and then flying three unremarkable flights that consumed about 50 percent of the total fuel. He reported the airplane and engine flew fine and there was no indication of any developing problems with the engine. The pilot said the takeoff on which the accident occurred was routine, the engine was smooth and powerful, and all the instruments were in their normal operating ranges. The fuel selector was on the right tank and there was about 17 gallons fuel in that tank. When about 150 feet agl, he reduced the propeller rpm and, at that time, the engine started "cutting out." It never totally quit. He verified that the fuel boost pump was on, and recalled that the fuel pressure gauge and oil pressure gauge were in the green arc. He changed fuel tanks but had no more time to attempt to restart the engine before ditching. The second pilot reported that he believed the engine "picked up" again just before they ditched in the lake. Examination of the aircraft and engine after recovery from the lake failed to reveal any mechanical irregularity. The carburetor was lost in the lake during recovery and was not found.

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

The loss of engine power for undetermined reasons.

Full narrative available

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