NTSB Identification: FTW85LA293.
The docket is stored on NTSB microfiche number 28289.
Accident occurred Sunday, July 21, 1985 in GRAFORD, TX
Aircraft: PIPER PA-38-112, registration: N2323E
Injuries: 2 Minor.

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 PILOT ARRIVED IN THE MINERAL WELLS, TX, AREA, HIS INTENDED DESTINATION, AND STATED HE COULDN'T SEE THE AIRPORT DUE TO THE ROTATING BEACON AND RUNWAY LIGHTS NOT OPERATING. NOTAMED TO THIS EFFECT, HOWEVER, THE AIRPORT SUPERVISOR STATED THAT TO THE BEST OF HIS KNOWLEDGE THE RUNWAY LIGHTS WERE OPERATING. THE PILOT DIVERTED TO POSSUM KINGDOM AIRPORT NEAR GRAFORD, TX. WITH ONLY A FEW MINUTES OF USABLE FUEL. HE ARRIVED IN THE AREA AT 7000 FEET MSL AND STARTED TO SPIRAL DOWN OVER THE AIRPORT. DURING THE SPIRAL, AT 6000 FEET MSL, THE ENGINE QUIT DUE TO FUEL EXHAUSTION, THE SPIRAL CONTINUED AND HE ROLLED OUT ON FINAL APPROACH TOO HIGH AND FAST. HE DELIBERATELY TOUCHED DOWN BESIDE THE RUNWAY IN SOFT TERRAIN TO PREVENT AN OVERRUN WHICH WOULD HAVE RESULTED IN A COLLISION WITH BUILDINGS. THE TOUCHDOWN WAS RATHER HARD, CAUSING THE NOSE AND RIGHT MAIN LANDING GEARS TO COLLAPSE. THE AIRCRAFT THEN FLIPPED INVERTED AND STOPPED.

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

PROPER DESCENT RATE..NOT MAINTAINED..PILOT IN COMMAND

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

DESIGN STRESS LIMITS OF AIRCRAFT..EXCEEDED..PILOT IN COMMAND

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

FLUID,FUEL..EXHAUSTION


Contributing Factors

TERRAIN CONDITION..SOFT


Contributing Factors

AIRPORT FACILITIES,ROTATING BEACON..INOPERATIVE


Contributing Factors

DELAYED..PILOT IN COMMAND


Contributing Factors

PERFORMED..PILOT IN COMMAND

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