NTSB Identification: MIA05LA106.
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Accident occurred Saturday, May 21, 2005 in Lake Wales, FL
Probable Cause Approval Date: 09/13/2005
Aircraft: Pitts S1S, registration: N5WD
Injuries: 1 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 while in flight about 6,500 feet, near his departure airport, as he was maneuvering he smelled fuel, and felt a spray of fuel on his leg. He immediately dove the airplane and landed uneventfully. After taxiing to parking, and upon securing the engine, the airplane suddenly became engulfed with flames. Postcrash examination of the airplane revealed that a fuel line had become loose and had detached from the fuel servo fitting while inflight. According to the pilot, post-crash examination of the airplane revealed that a fuel line that had become loose and had detached from the fuel servo fitting while inflight. He said that while the propeller was turning, the slipstream kept the fuel away from the exhaust piping, however, once the engine was secured, the fuel leaked on to the exhaust piping and a fire had erupted. The pilot said that the airplane's logbook showed that it had last received an inspection, and had been returned to service on January 20, 2005. He also said purchased the airplane on May 17, 2005, and had only flown it for about 3 or 4 hours.

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

Improper maintenance inspection by other maintenance personnel, which resulted in a loose fuel line fitting going undetected, a fuel leak onto exhaust piping, and a fire.

Full narrative available

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