NTSB Identification: MIA00LA193.
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Accident occurred Thursday, June 29, 2000 in WINTER HAVEN, FL
Probable Cause Approval Date: 07/10/2001
Aircraft: Piper PA-23-160, registration: N3317P
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 flight instructor stated that during the climbout, at about 500 feet indicated altitude, the left engine ceased operating. He said he took control of the airplane, performed the normal procedures, and flew back to the airport, making communication announcements on the frequency, 122.7. The instructor said that as he was flying the airplane, he noticed the landing gear was not coming down, so he leveled off and proceeded to pump the gear down. By the time the gear indicator lights showed three green lights, the instructor said that he had flown past the airport boundary at an altitude of 100 feet above ground level. The instructor said that he was going to try to turn around, but decided to proceed straight ahead and land in an orange grove, since the airplane was not climbing at Vyse. A certified FAA mechanic with inspection authorization examined the left engine, and did not find any mechanical failure or malfunction with the engine.

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

the flight instructor's failure to follow procedures/directives and his misjudgment of distance/altitude following a loss of engine power for undetermined reasons, which resulted in the proper touchdown point not being attained, an off airport landing being affected, and substantial damage to the aircraft during the emergency landing.

Full narrative available

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