NTSB Identification: CHI05CA166.
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Accident occurred Sunday, June 26, 2005 in Lapeer, MI
Probable Cause Approval Date: 10/27/2005
Aircraft: Cessna 182F, registration: N3184U
Injuries: 1 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 airplane was substantially damaged when it nosed over during a forced landing following an in-flight loss of engine power. The pilot stated that after 2 hours total flight time since refueling, the engine "coughed and [stopped] firing." He executed a forced landing in a cornfield, during which the nose landing gear collapsed and the airplane nosed over. A post-accident inspection revealed that the left fuel tank cap was not secure and was retained only by the safety chain between the cap and the fuel filler port. The right fuel tank cap was secured to the fuel tank filler port. No fuel was present in either fuel tank. The ground under the left fuel tank cap was discolored consistent with a fuel spill over a 12-inch diameter area, to a depth of about 4 inches. A stain consistent in appearance to fuel and several "nick marks" were observed on the upper surface of the left wing aft of the fuel tank filler port. The cockpit fuel selector handle was on the "BOTH" setting when observed after the accident. The pilot stated that he visually inspected the fuel caps from the ground after refueling. He did not physically verify the security of the fuel caps.
The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be: The pilot's inadequate preflight inspection due to his failure to physically verify the security of the fuel tank caps, the unsecured fuel tank cap and fuel exhaustion. Full narrative available
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