NTSB Identification: MIA01LA171.
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Accident occurred Monday, June 25, 2001 in Greenwood, MS
Probable Cause Approval Date: 12/04/2001
Aircraft: Lockheed P-38L-5LD, registration: N25Y
Injuries: 1 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 Lockheed P-38L-5LD "Lightning" was being ferried from Tullahoma, Tennessee, to its home base in Texas following its participation in an air show. During descent into the Greenwood, Mississippi area for refueling, the left engine backfired, ran roughly, and the cockpit filled with thick smoke. With reduced cockpit visibility, and a need to get the aircraft on the ground as soon as possible, the pilot chose a cotton field for a forced landing. Postcrash examination of the left engine revealed the supercharger sustained an internal compressor wheel failure that shot compressor blade pieces through the supercharger housing and the fuel feed line. High pressure 100 octane fuel spewed inside the left engine nacelle, ignited, and caused the in-flight fire.
The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be: the failure and uncontained separation of supercharger impeller blades for undetermined reasons during normal descent, resulting in a punctured fuel line and the subsequent in-flight engine fire and emergency descent and forced landing to a farm field. Full narrative available
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