NTSB Identification: LAX07LA052.
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Accident occurred Wednesday, December 06, 2006 in Eureka, CA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 01/31/2008
Aircraft: Cessna 150G, registration: N3394J
Injuries: 1 Uninjured.
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 departed on a personal local area flight and climbed to about 900 feet when the engine began to sputter and eventually lost power. He applied carburetor heat when the engine first began to sputter and lose power, but the engine continued to sputter and lose rpm's. The pilot attempted multiple times to restart the engine to no avail, and finally ditched the airplane in a shallow body of sea water, about 12 feet deep, next to a boat and oyster farm. Post accident examination of the airplane by an FAA airworthiness inspector revealed that both fuel tanks were 1/2 full with auto fuel. The left wing sustained substantial damage and was crushed from the leading edge aft to the spar. No preimpact mechanical malfunctions or failures were identified. The inspector further noted that a placard was found above the carburetor heat control knob that stated it was inoperative. A review of the weather data available for the area revealed a temperature and dew point that were conducive to serious icing at a cruise power setting.
The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be: a loss of engine power due to carburetor icing and the pilot's inadequate preflight planning and decision to operate the airplane in carburetor icing conditions with an inoperative carburetor heat system. Full narrative available
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