NTSB Identification: CHI07CA262.
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Accident occurred Wednesday, August 08, 2007 in Bloomington, IN
Probable Cause Approval Date: 10/31/2007
Aircraft: Beech BE-77, registration: N1837Y
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 airplane sustained substantial damage during a forced landing to a cornfield after takeoff. The pilot reported that soon after takeoff from runway 17, he noticed the fuel gauge indicated less fuel on board than he expected. He attempted to return to the airport and land on runway 35. About 1/2 mile from runway 35, the engine lost power. The pilot made a "Mayday" report and attempted a forced landing to the grass field adjacent to the airport. He reported that he saw a large roll of hay in his line of flight, so he executed a forced landing to a cornfield and the airplane subsequently nosed over. The inspection of the airplane revealed that the left fuel tank was empty and had blue stains around the drain. The right fuel tank had only a cup of fuel. Wing tank placards indicated the unusable fuel in each wing tank was .5 gallons. The electric fuel pump contained some residual fuel, but it was not full. No fuel was in the line between the carburetor and the fuel pump. The out line of the fuel pump contained a small amount of fuel. The carburetor bowl contained about 5 to 10 drops of fuel. No mechanical deficiencies were found that would have precluded normal engine operation. The pilot reported that he had flown the airplane about 10 days prior to the accident flight, and that he had calculated that there was about 2 hours of fuel remaining in the aircraft. He reported that on the day of the accident flight, he did not use a dipstick to check for the amount of fuel on board the airplane. He reported that he checked the fuel gauges and they indicated there was fuel on board. He reported that he was not sure if he had visually checked inside the fuel tanks.
The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be: The loss of engine power due to fuel exhaustion as a result of the pilot's inadequate preflight. Full narrative available
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