NTSB Identification: LAX02LA298.
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Accident occurred Saturday, September 28, 2002 in Lucerne Valley, CA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 09/29/2004
Aircraft: Cessna 182, registration: N6412A
Injuries: 1 Minor,2 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 airplane experienced a loss of engine power in-flight and collided with a tree during a forced landing. The pilot said that prior to departure he verified that the airplane had 35 gallons of fuel onboard. While approaching his planned destination, about 6,500 feet above ground level, the engine began to sputter. He verified that the fuel selector was in the "both" position, pulled the carburetor heat to the on position, and the engine smoothed out. About 10 to 15 second later, the engine began to surge, and then quit. Unable to restart the engine, the pilot opted to land in a field, next to a busy highway. After touching down, the airplane overran the field and continued across a dirt road. The left wing collided with a dead tree and the airplane impacted an embankment. After exiting the airplane, the pilot noted that there was a direct tailwind. He estimated the wind was about 25 to 30 knots, with gusts up to 40 knots. A representative of the company that recovered the wreckage after the accident stated that fuel tanks and lines were intact, and they drained about 3 gallons of fuel in the left tank and about 4 gallons of fuel in the right tank.

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

A loss of engine power due to fuel exhaustion as a result of the pilot's inadequate fuel consumption calculations.

Full narrative available

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