NTSB Identification: LAX89LA220.
The docket is stored on NTSB microfiche number 40554.
Accident occurred Saturday, June 17, 1989 in SACRAMENTO, CA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 09/30/1991
Aircraft: COMMONWEALTH 185, registration: N92827
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 AIRCRAFT EXPERIENCED FUEL EXHAUSTION DURING CRUISE ABOUT TWO MILES FROM THE INTENDED DESTINATION AIRPORT. THE PILOT LANDED ON A HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL FIELD AND WAS UNABLE TO STOP PRIOR TO COLLIDING WITH A FENCE. THE PILOT SAID THAT HE HAD 'NEVER BEEN ABLE TO COMPLETELY TRUST THE FUEL QUANTITY INDICATORS,' AND, THAT VISUAL CHECKS OF THE FUEL TANKS WERE NOT ACCURATE DUE TO THE GROUND ATTITUDE OF THE AIRCRAFT. THE PILOT NOTED THAT HE USED A SYSTEM OF FUEL USAGE CALCULATION VERSUS AMOUNT OF FUEL LOADED ONBOARD TO DETERMINE THE AMOUNT OF FUEL IN THE TANKS AT ANY GIVEN TIME. THE PILOT STATED THAT HE HAD NOT USED A FUEL DIP STICK DEVICE TO QUANTIFY THE AMOUNT OF FUEL IN THE TANKS.

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

FUEL EXHAUSTION DUE TO THE PILOT'S FAILURE TO ACCURATELY DETERMINE THE FUEL LOAD PRIOR TO DEPARTURE.

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