NTSB Identification: ANC90FA086.
The docket is stored on NTSB microfiche number 40996.
Nonscheduled 14 CFR
Accident occurred Saturday, June 09, 1990 in BETHEL, AK
Probable Cause Approval Date: 08/28/1992
Aircraft: PIPER PA-32, registration: N4257T
Injuries: 1 Fatal.

NTSB investigators either traveled in support of this investigation or conducted a significant amount of investigative work without any travel, and used data obtained from various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

IMMEDIATELY AFTER DEPARTURE THE PILOT DECLARED AN EMERGENCY, AND THE AIRCRAFT WAS OBSERVED TURNING RIGHT, BACK TOWARD THE AIRPORT, AND LOSING ALTITUDE. THE AIRCRAFT CRASHED 1/4 MILE SE OF THE DEPARTURE END OF RUNWAY 18. THE ON-SCENE INVESTIGATION SHOWED THAT THE FUEL SELECTOR POSITION APPEARED TO BE OFF OR ON THE LEFT TIP TANK. THERE WAS STILL MOVEMENT ON THE SELECTOR TO THE LEFT, INDICATING IT MAY HAVE BEEN ON THE LEFT TIP TANK.

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

THE PILOT'S FAILURE TO MAINTAIN AIRSPEED DURING AN EMERGENCY LANDING FOLLOWING AN ENGINE POWER LOSS. THE LOSS OF ENGINE POWER WAS DUE TO AN IMPROPER FUEL SELECTOR POSITION WHICH RESULTED IN FUEL STARVATION. A CONTRIBUTING FACTOR WAS THE PILOT'S DECISION TO TURN AND ATTEMPT TO RETURN TO THE AIRPORT.

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