NTSB Identification: ATL04CA091.
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Accident occurred Friday, April 23, 2004 in Delco, NC
Probable Cause Approval Date: 07/29/2004
Aircraft: Piper PA-28R-200, registration: N32891
Injuries: 2 Minor.

NTSB investigators used data provided by various entities, including, but not limited to, the Federal Aviation Administration and/or the operator and did not travel in support of this investigation to prepare this aircraft accident report.

The flight instructor was conducting an instrument training flight with a private pilot. The engine start, run up, and flight was conducted on the right main fuel tank. The airplane was flown for 2 hours and 4 minutes. While being vectored by an air traffic controller for an NDB approach the airplane experienced a loss of engine power. The flight instructor did not use the check list for the loss of engine power. The fuel selector was not moved to the left main fuel tank. An emergency was declared with the controller and a forced landing was made to an open field. The airplane collided with trees on landing roll out. Examination of the right main fuel tank revealed the fuel tank was empty. The left wing separated during the accident and fuel was observed by emergency personnel dripping from the fuel tank. When the pilot was asked what may have caused the loss of engine power, he stated, "fuel starvation." Examination and partial disassembly of the engine revealed no anomalies.

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

The flight instructor's improper fuel management resulting in a loss of engine power due to fuel starvation. A factor was the flight instructor's failure to use the checklist.

Full narrative available

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