NTSB Identification: ATL90LA046.
The docket is stored on NTSB microfiche number 41591.
Accident occurred Wednesday, December 27, 1989 in SELMER, TN
Probable Cause Approval Date: 06/26/1992
Aircraft: PIPER PA-38-112, registration: N2443K
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 INSTRUCTOR & PRIVATE RATED STUDENT WERE PRACTICING TOUCH & GO LANDINGS. ON THE THIRD APPROACH, ABEAM THE NUMBERS ON DOWNWIND LEG, THE ENGINE QUIT. THE STUDENT WAS TOLD TO FLY TOWARD THE RUNWAY WHILE THE INSTRUCTOR TRIED TO RESTART THE ENGINE, BUT WITHOUT SUCCESS. A FORCED LANDING WAS MADE IN A FIELD. THE NOSE LANDING GEAR COLLAPSED & ONE MAIN LANDING GEAR WAS TORN AWAY DURING THE LANDING ROLL. AN FAA INSPECTOR EXAMINED THE ENGINE LATER. HE REPORTED THAT THE SPARK PLUG ELECTRODES WERE WHITE IN COLOR. THE ENGINE WAS THEN OPERATED WITH A VERY LEAN MIXTURE SETTING. AFTERWARDS THE SPARK PLUG ELECTRODES HAD THE SAME WHITE COLORATION.

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

THE FAILURE OF THE INSTRUCTOR TO PLACE THE ENGINE MIXTURE CONTROL IN THE RICH POSITION PRIOR TO BEGINNING TRAFFIC PATTERN MANEUVERS. AS A RESULT, THE ENGINE QUIT BECAUSE OF THE LEAN FUEL MIXTURE AT THE HIGH POWER SETTING REQUIRED FOR THE GO-AROUND AND DOWNWIND LEG.

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