NTSB Identification: LAX02LA290.
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Accident occurred Wednesday, September 18, 2002 in Vail, AZ
Probable Cause Approval Date: 09/29/2004
Aircraft: Cessna 172G, registration: N2982U
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.

During a planned nonstop cross-country flight from Texas to Arizona, the pilot exhausted all fuel and made a hard forced landing in a clearing. The pilot reported that en route strong headwinds were encountered, and he was aware that his fuel status was low but thought he had sufficient fuel to fly home despite the headwinds. The pilot acknowledged that he should have diverted to available airports but evidently misjudged the headwind and his available fuel. When all engine power was lost he aimed for a clearing near a drag strip. During the descent he observed power lines, dissipated airspeed to avoid them, and stalled thus impacting the ground hard. No mechanical problems were reported with the airplane.

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

The pilot's inadequate fuel consumption calculations, which resulted in fuel exhaustion.

Full narrative available

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