NTSB Identification: CHI08LA166
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Tuesday, June 17, 2008 in West Carrollton, OH
Probable Cause Approval Date: 12/28/2008
Aircraft: HELTON LARK 95, registration: N86657
Injuries: 1 Fatal,1 Serious.

NTSB investigators may not have traveled in support of this investigation and used data provided by various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

Shortly after takeoff, the airplane entered a descending left turn. The airplane contacted a utility pole, a light pole, and a tree prior to coming to rest. A witness stated the airplane sounded fine on takeoff, but the engine began to lose power shortly thereafter. Post accident inspection of the airplane and engine revealed the number four cylinder sustained impact damage in the area of the top spark plug. The top spark plug on this cylinder was found separated from the engine. The top spark plugs on the remaining cylinders were loose. The accident occurred on the first flight following an annual inspection. The mechanic who signed off the inspection stated he checked the torque on the spark plugs after they were installed. The airplane was topped off with fuel prior to the flight. The pilot's logbook did not show any entries indicating that he had ever flown a Lark 95 prior to the accident flight and the passenger stated this was the pilot's first flight in the airplane.

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

The improper installation of spark plugs during the annual inspection which resulted in a loss of engine power shortly after takeoff. Contributing to the accident was the lack of suitable terrain during the forced landing.

Full narrative available

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