NTSB Identification: LAX02LA256.
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Accident occurred Wednesday, August 21, 2002 in Tehachapi, CA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 09/29/2004
Aircraft: Dodd RV-4, registration: N62VR
Injuries: 1 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 airplane nosed over during a forced landing in a field following a loss of engine power during the departure climb. The pilot manufactured the airplane, and it was undergoing its first test flight following the issuance of a Special Airworthiness Certificate. Approximately 10 minutes after takeoff the engine lost power. The pilot elected to land in a field. The landing forced debris into the wheel pants, which locked up the wheels. The airplane nosed over coming to rest inverted. Post accident examination of the engine by an FAA inspector revealed a fuel leak around the "B" nut that attached the aluminum fuel line to the throttle body. Removal of the nut and line revealed that the line cracked at the point of the flare. The builder had manufactured and installed this line.

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

the owner/builder's improperly fabricated and installed fuel line, which cracked at the point of the flare, resulting in a fuel leak and loss of engine power during the takeoff climb. A contributing factor was the soft terrain that jammed the landing gear wheels, nosing over the airplane during the ensuing forced landing.

Full narrative available

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