NTSB Identification: NYC06LA185.
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Accident occurred Thursday, July 27, 2006 in Blacksburg, VA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 07/25/2007
Aircraft: Piper PA-32R-300, registration: N43945
Injuries: 1 Serious,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 airplane was completely fueled earlier during the day, and completed one flight uneventfully. The airplane departed on runway 30 for a return flight to the pilot's home airport. About 200 feet agl, the engine began to run rough and lost partial power. The electric fuel pump was already on, and the pilot switched fuel tanks, but the engine continued to run rough. The pilot initially flew a left hand traffic pattern for runway 30; however, he subsequently did not think the airplane would reach that runway. The pilot then performed a forced landing to a closed runway oriented about 070 degrees. The airplane touched down near the end of the runway, traveled over a grassy area, and struck trees. Examination of the wreckage revealed that the flaps were in the retracted position. The left wing fuel tank was compromised during the impact. The right wing fuel tank remained intact, and was approximately 1/4-full. In addition, fuel was present in the fuel manifold. The fuel selector was found positioned toward the left tank position, but not in the detent. Further examination of the wreckage revealed that the number six exhaust valve pushrod was bent, possibly during recovery of the airplane. Examination of the engine, including the number six cylinder exhaust valve, did not reveal any preimpact mechanical malfunctions. The airplane's most recent annual inspection was performed about 20 days prior to the accident, and the airplane had accumulated approximately 3 hours of operation since the inspection.

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

A partial loss of engine power for undetermined reasons, which resulted in a forced landing after takeoff, and subsequent collision with trees.

Full narrative available

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