NTSB Identification: ATL02LA103.
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Accident occurred Thursday, May 23, 2002 in Charleston, SC
Probable Cause Approval Date: 07/23/2003
Aircraft: Mooney M20J, registration: N4560H
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.

During climb through 3300 feet mean sea level, the engine lost power. During emergency landing on a road, the airplane struck a power line, then collided with the ground inverted. The underside of the fuselage and empennage was found heavily coated with and streaming engine oil. Examination of the engine found the number 1 connecting rod detached. The number 2 and 3 connecting rods exhibited heat discoloration and lack of lubrication. Bearing material was extruded, the connection rods were separated, and both were found in multiple pieces. The number 4 connecting rod remained attached, and the bearing showed early signs of heat discoloration and lack of lubrication. The connecting rod separations exhibited overload signatures, and there were no signs of fatigue. Maintenance records indicate an annual inspection was completed on December 14, 2001, at an engine time of 595 hours since major overhaul, and the engine accumulated 70 hours since inspection. The engine received a propeller strike inspection on February 8, 2000, and the engine was disassembled, repaired, and reassembled. The engine time for the propeller strike repairs was not recorded in the maintenance log.

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

Total loss of engine power due to oil system starvation. A factor was the transmission wire encountered during emergency descent.

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