NTSB Identification: NYC03LA010.
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Accident occurred Sunday, October 20, 2002 in Salisbury, MA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 09/30/2003
Aircraft: Cessna 152, registration: N47147
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.

The pilot performed a preflight inspection of the airplane and observed water in the fuel system. The pilot drained the fuel system and allowed the engine to operate for "well over 15 minutes," prior to takeoff. The airplane departed uneventfully; however, later in the flight, while maneuvering, it experienced a total loss of engine power. The pilot was unable to restart the engine and performed a forced landing to a marsh area. Examination of the airplane and engine, which included draining fuel samples from both wing fuel tanks, the gascolator and the carburetor, revealed significant amounts of water contamination throughout the airplane's fuel system. The undersides of both the right and left wing fuel caps exhibited evidence of corrosion. The right wing fuel cap seal was severely worn and cracked. The airplane was parked outside for over a week and a check of weather observations reported for the area during the two week period prior to the accident, revealed several observations which included precipitation. The airplane had been operated for about 15 hours since it's most recent annual inspection, which was performed about 2 months prior to the accident.

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

The pilot's inadequate preflight inspection, which resulted in a loss of engine power due to fuel contamination. Factors in this accident were the corroded fuel tanks caps, and an inadequate annual inspection.

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