NTSB Identification: ATL04LA123.
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Accident occurred Sunday, May 30, 2004 in N. Myrtle Beach, SC
Probable Cause Approval Date: 07/07/2005
Aircraft: Cessna 310, registration: N361Z
Injuries: 1 Fatal,3 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 pilot stated approximately four miles from the runway, the right engine began to sputter. He stated that he attempted to restart it, and the right engine briefly produced power and then sputtered again. The pilot stated that he feathered the right propeller and "continued the approach single engine." The pilot stated that "as the approach progressed, [he] realized that [the airplane] could not maintain the glide slope... or clear a tree line ahead." The pilot stated that he committed to ditching the airplane in the waterway to the right, so he retracted the landing gear, and the airplane touched down tail low. The airplane ditched in the intracoastal waterway two miles short of runway 23 and sank in 12-20 feet of water. The post-accident examination of the airplane revealed the airframe was intact. Fuel system continuity was established from the tip tanks to the fuel strainer, and the fuel strainer and the fuel pump were intact and free of debris. When water was displaced from the engine, fuel system, and magnetos, both engines started and produced power at idle and high RPM settings. No anomalies were observed during the engine run. The pilot of a flight in the airplane on the previous day stated that upon returning to DeKalb-Peachtree Airport, there were about 58-60 gallons of fuel on board the airplane. He further stated that the airplane was not refueled that evening or prior to the accident flight on May 30, 2004. According to the 1955 Cessna 310 owner's manual, the main fuel wingtip fuel tanks have a capacity of 102 gallons, of which 100 gallons are usable fuel and two gallons are unusable.

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

The pilot's inadequate preflight/planning and his in-flight decision which resulted in the loss of power in one engine due to fuel starvation.

Full narrative available

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