NTSB Identification: ATL89LA102.
The docket is stored on NTSB microfiche number 39234.
Accident occurred Saturday, March 11, 1989 in COOLIDGE, GA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 07/09/1990
Aircraft: CESSNA 172G, registration: N1365F
Injuries: 2 Uninjured.

NTSB investigators may not have traveled in support of this investigation and used data provided by various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

THE ENGINE LOST PWR DURING A FERRY FLT & A FORCED LDG WAS MADE IN A SOFT FIELD, WHERE THE AIRPLANE NOSED OVER. A POST-CRASH INVESTIGATION REVEALED THAT THE CARBURETOR FUEL-INLET FILTER SCREEN WAS MOSTLY BLOCKED WITH A LINT-LIKE MATERIAL. A MICROSCOPIC EXAM OF THE MATERIAL REVEALED THAT IT APPEARED TO BE CLOTH FIBERS. THE SOURCE OF THE MATERIAL WAS NOT DETERMINED. FURTHER INVESTIGATION REVEALED THAT THE ENGINE HAD EXPERIENCED REPEATED, INTERMITTENT PWR LOSSES OVER THE PREVIOUS WEEK IN SPITE OF REPEATED EFFORTS BY COMPANY MECHANICS TO LOCATE THE SOURCE OF THE PROBLEM. ACCORDING TO THE MECHANICS, CONTAMINATION WAS FOUND IN THE FUEL SYSTEM DURING THOSE EFFORTS; THE FILTERS WERE CLEANED AND THE FUEL SYSTEM WAS FLUSHED. THE INTERMITTENT POWER LOSSES OCCURRED AGAIN. EARLIER ON THIS FLT, THE ENGINE BEGAN TO SURGE & A PRECAUTIONARY LDG WAS MADE. THE MECHANIC ACCOMPANYING THE PLT REPORTEDLY FOUND NO PROBLEMS AND THE FLT WAS CONTINUED. THE ACCIDENT OCCURRED ABOUT 1 HR LATER.

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

FUEL CONTAMINATION OF AN UNKNOWN ORIGIN, FAILURE OF COMPANY MAINTENANCE PERSONNEL TO LOCATE AND REMOVE ALL CONTAMINATION, CONTINUED OPERATION OF THE AIRCRAFT BY THE PILOT AFTER THE CAUSE OF A KNOWN ENGINE PROBLEM WAS NOT DETERMINED, AND SUBSEQUENT FUEL STARVATION. THE LIGHT CONDITIONS AT DUSK AND THE SOFT TERRAIN IN THE EMERGENCY LANDING AREA WERE CONTRIBUTING FACTORS.

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