NTSB Identification: SEA06CA032.
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Accident occurred Saturday, December 24, 2005 in Emmett, ID
Probable Cause Approval Date: 05/30/2006
Aircraft: Piper PA-28-151, registration: N5695V
Injuries: 1 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 pilot was descending through 6,500 feet mean sea level when the engine lost power. With the left fuel gage indicating 5 gallons and the right gage 6 gallons, the pilot was successful in restarting the engine, but only momentarily before it lost power a second time. Diverting to another airport, which the pilot believed was equipped with pilot controlled lighting, the pilot clicked his mike 7 times to illuminate the runway lights. However, ground fog in the area precluded him from locating the airport. After the pilot attempted a second restart of the engine, which was unsuccessful, he entered the fog but could see some ground reference with the aid of faint house lights in the area. The airplane subsequently touched down in a field with the left wing impacting a fence post and separating from the airplane. The aircraft came to rest on its right side after its left wing separated from the fuselage, and there was no postcrash fire. A post accident examination of the airplane revealed no fuel present in the right wing and 3.2 gallons of fuel in the left tank, of which 2.2 gallons was usable. The fuel selector was in the right tank position.
The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be: The pilot's inadequate in-flight decision by failing to refuel while en route, resulting in fuel exhaustion and the loss of power. A factor was the fence post. Full narrative available
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