NTSB Identification: CHI06FA067.
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Accident occurred Saturday, January 14, 2006 in Pierre, SD
Probable Cause Approval Date: 04/25/2007
Aircraft: Piper PA-32-300, registration: N8745E
Injuries: 1 Fatal,5 Serious.
NTSB investigators either traveled in support of this investigation or conducted a significant amount of investigative work without any travel, and used data obtained from various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.
The pilot reported that the engine surged and lost power during the initial climb after takeoff. In an interview, he stated that he had previously turned the auxiliary electric fuel boost pump off, but when the engine surged and lost power, he switched fuel tanks, and turned the auxiliary boost pump on. He was unable to restart the engine, and the airplane collided with a ravine during the ensuing forced landing. An examination of the airplane disclosed no evidence of any preaccident mechanical anomalies. The airplane's engine was run in an engine test cell and developed full rated rpm. An on-scene examination of the cockpit fuel selector found that it was positioned between the left and right fuel tanks.
The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be: The loss of engine power during takeoff-initial climb due to the pilot's failure to correctly position the fuel selector, which resulted in fuel starvation and a forced landing. Full narrative available
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