NTSB Identification: MIA08LA180
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Saturday, August 30, 2008 in Elizabethtown, KY
Probable Cause Approval Date: 02/25/2009
Aircraft: CESSNA 182A, registration: N5927B
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 airplane was fueled before the pilot's first flight that day. A total of 6.0 gallons of fuel were added to each fuel tank. After fueling, the pilot dipped each fuel tank using the provided dipstick, and determined that each tank contained between 7.0 and 7.5 gallons of usable fuel. He then flew one load of skydivers, returned, and attempted to secure the engine for fueling but was pressured by company personnel that he had enough fuel to make the second flight and that he needed to keep the airplane operating. He reluctantly kept the engine running and did not refuel the airplane, contrary to his typical procedure. The next load of skydivers were boarded, and the flight departed. The flight climbed to 11,000 feet where they were offloaded. He maneuvered away from the airport due to clouds, and when clear of them, proceeded to return. While flying at 2,000 feet close to the traffic pattern, the engine lost power due to fuel exhaustion. Attempts to restart were unsuccessful. The pilot performed a forced landing in a corn field substantially damaging the airplane. Postaccident, a total of between 8.5 and 9.0 gallons of fuel were drained from the airplane. The total unusable fuel amount for all flight conditions is 10.0 gallons. A replacement propeller was installed and the engine was started and found to operate normally. The owner's manual used by the operator was incorrect, though the pilot knew the correct unusable amount.

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

A loss of engine power due to fuel exhaustion. Contributing to the accident was pressure from the company for the pilot to fly the second load of skydivers without refueling.

Full narrative available

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