NTSB Identification: NYC07FA109.
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Accident occurred Friday, May 04, 2007 in Odenton, MD
Probable Cause Approval Date: 08/28/2008
Aircraft: Piper PA38-112, registration: N2600N
Injuries: 1 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 stated that the cross-country flight was uneventful until in the vicinity of his planned destination, and that there were no problems with the performance or handling characteristics of the airplane. As the airplane turned from a southerly heading to an easterly heading to align with the destination runway, the pilot switched fuel tanks, and the engine immediately stopped producing power. According to the pilot, "I made a mistake. I should have switched tanks while the wings were level, before I made the maneuver." The pilot again switched tanks, turned on the fuel boost pump, and attempted a restart, but lacked the altitude to accomplish the engine start. He then maneuvered the airplane to a two-lane road that ran parallel to a busy state highway beneath him for the forced landing. Examination of the airplane at the scene revealed that both fuel tanks were voided, but the fuel caps remained secure in their ports. There was no odor of fuel, nor was there evidence of fuel spillage at the scene. The left fuel gauge indicated one-half tank, and the right fuel gauge indicated "Empty." The fuel selector was selected to the right fuel tank position. According to the pilot, "I had plenty of fuel, I just didn't manage it right."

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

The pilot's mismanagement of the airplane's fuel supply, which resulted in fuel starvation and a total loss of engine power.

Full narrative available

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