NTSB Identification: NYC01LA032.
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Accident occurred Wednesday, November 08, 2000 in LUMBERTON, NJ
Probable Cause Approval Date: 11/14/2001
Aircraft: Navion A, registration: N675JM
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.
As the airplane was in the traffic pattern, the engine lost all power. The pilot turned towards the airport, and observed an airplane at the approach end of the runway. The airplane on the ground appeared to be "in position" on the runway and was not moving, so the pilot extended the flaps to full, and lowered the landing gear to slow the airspeed. Realizing that the increased drag would prohibit a glide to the runway, the pilot performed a forced landing to a field. The airplane had been in restoration for about 10 years. During the restoration, the fuel tanks were removed, drained, pressurized, and inspected before being reinstalled in the airplane. Upon completion of the restoration, the pilot sought out a mechanic to perform an annual inspection on the airplane; however, due to problems with the airplane, the mechanic refused to "sign off" the annual inspection, and the airplane was flown without it. Examination of the engine after the accident revealed a brown stained liquid, similar to automotive fuel, draining from fuel lines as they were removed. Debris was also observed in the liquid. The pilot stated that he had never put automotive fuel into the airplane; however, "dried auto fuel" may have been present in the fuel tanks, and loosened as new aviation fuel was added to the tanks. The engine had accumulated about 5 total hours since the restoration.
The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be: The pilot's misjudgment of altitude and distance to the runway while performing a forced landing after an engine failure. Factors related to the accident were the pilot's inadequate rebuilding procedures and maintenance inspection, which resulted in contamination of the fuel supply. Full narrative available
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