NTSB Identification: CHI01LA030.
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Accident occurred Wednesday, November 01, 2000 in WORTH, IL
Probable Cause Approval Date: 10/23/2001
Aircraft: Aviat PITTS S-2B, registration: N169DM
Injuries: 1 Uninjured.
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 impacted the terrain following a loss of engine power. The pilot reported that he performed a preflight of the airplane with the exception of verifying a chart used to keep track of the fuel on board. According to the pilot he thought there were 19 gallons of fuel on board, however, 15.2 gallons of the fuel were used on a previous flight. He reported, "...I misread that part of the calculation." Fuel exhaustion occurred about 20 minutes after takeoff while at an altitude of 1,050 feet above the ground. The pilot reported "Approximately 22 seconds later I impacted the ground with a 75' landing distance, measured using step method. A/C did not roll or tumble, but I was able to keep it upright through the impact. The speed of impact was approximately 110 mph as I had to avoid a bridge and set it down immediately." He reported on the form that the accident cold have been prevented "By thorough ground, physical, preflight. Do not use a chart, without actual in sight ck. of fuel levels."
The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be: The pilot's inadequate preflight of the airplane and his failure to verify the fuel supply on board, which resulted in fuel exhaustion. Factors associated with the accident were the low altitude at which the power loss occurred and the lack of suitable terrain given the low altitude. Full narrative available
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