NTSB Identification: CHI01LA278.
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Accident occurred Saturday, August 11, 2001 in Ste. Genevieve, MO
Probable Cause Approval Date: 11/23/2001
Aircraft: Gremminger 532 Commander, registration: N609CE
Injuries: 1 Uninjured.

NTSB investigators may have traveled in support of this investigation and used data provided by various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

The gyrocopter nosed over during a forced landing following a loss of engine power while on downwind to land. The pilot reported he had made several flights during the day which included practicing forced landings. The pilot reported that he took off and stayed in the traffic pattern to land. He reported, "Turning onto the crosswind leg I noted the fuel level indication at one eighth of a tank and decided that this will be my last circuit for the day." The pilot reported he turned onto downwind and leveled off at an altitude of 200 feet above the ground. He reported that after 3 - 5 seconds the engine lost power. The pilot reported that due to the low altitude and the high sink rate, he was committed to an off airport landing. The pilot reported there was a bean field near the downwind leg which contained a barren area. He reported the barren area was wet with an area which looked dry. He made the landing on the section which looked dry. The pilot reported, "As the nose landing gear touched down there was a sensation of the aircraft's nose continuing down below normal ground roll attitude. At this point it became obvious that the aircraft was tipping over forward and to the left." The pilot reported that after the landing he discovered that there was damp mud under a thin layer of dry terrain. The pilot reported that two cups of fuel were drained from the fuel tank following the forced landing.

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

The inadequate fuel supply for the flight which resulted in fuel exhaustion. A factor associated with the accident was the low altitude and the soft terrain on which the forced landing was made.

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