NTSB Identification: CHI01LA009.
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Accident occurred Wednesday, October 11, 2000 in LANSING, MI
Probable Cause Approval Date: 10/23/2001
Aircraft: Piper PA-28-140, registration: N732FL
Injuries: 1 Serious,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 airplane sustained substantial damage on impact with trees and terrain during a forced landing after the pilot declared he was out of fuel. The pilot was seriously injured and the passenger sustained minor injuries. The pilot stated, "Departed Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Airport at 5:01P after refueling. Visually checked fuel level prior to departure for Lansing. ... Fuel starvation occurred east of LAN after 4 hrs and 35 min of flight (approx) and impact 4 1/2 mi east of destination. ... I slowed the aircraft and applied flaps. I headed for a dark area on the ground and impacted trees." Federal Aviation Administration inspectors performed an on-scene examination of the wreckage. An inspector stated, "An on scene investigation of the aircraft was conducted as well as an inspection of the engine after recovery of the aircraft. No abnormalities were noted other than there was no fuel in either tank or any evidence of fuel at the scene." The pilot stated that he "figured 9 gal/hr for cruise, leaned 75% at roughly 2500rpm. ... Pilot stated that he probably miscalculated winds."

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

the pilot's inaccurate preflight planning. Factors were the fuel exhaustion, the trees, and the bright night condition.

Full narrative available

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