NTSB Identification: CHI04CA252.
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Accident occurred Saturday, September 04, 2004 in Marshall, MN
Probable Cause Approval Date: 12/03/2004
Aircraft: Cessna T310R, registration: N5005J
Injuries: 5 Uninjured.
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 airplane sustained substantial damage during a forced landing following a loss of engine power during cruise flight. The pilot stated in a telephone interview that during the flight, a pilot-rated passenger was handling radio communications and also handling some flying duties. He stated that he believes that the pilot-rated passenger inadvertently switched the fuel selectors so that both engines were using fuel from the right main fuel tank. He said that he believes that this occurred when the pilot-rated passenger was attempting to switch the fuel tanks from the auxiliary fuel tanks back to the main fuel tanks. He stated that later in the flight both engines stopped producing power. The pilot stated that he switched fuel tanks and was able to re-start the left engine, but could not get the right engine to restart. He said that he was unable to maintain altitude and elected to land on a gravel road. The pilot said that the road was narrow and the left landing gear went off of the road. The airplane subsequently went off of the left side of the road and into a bean field. The pilot stated that during the attempts to restart the right engine, the propeller was not placed in the feather position. He stated that he was the pilot in command of the flight and that he was seated in the left seat of the airplane. The pilot did not report any malfunction of the airplane or it's systems.
The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be: The pilot rated passenger selecting an improper fuel selector position, and the pilot in command not verifying the fuel selector position which resulted in fuel starvation. Contributing factors were the pilot's failure to feather the right engine propeller during the emergency, the unsuitable terrain encountered during the landing, and the crop. Full narrative available
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