NTSB Identification: WPR10LA209
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Friday, April 16, 2010 in El Cajon, CA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 07/12/2011
Aircraft: CESSNA 182, registration: N5318B
Injuries: 2 Minor.

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 reported that he flew around the local area and was going to orbit his parent’s house before heading inbound for landing. He stated that he applied carburetor heat for the descent to 2,000 feet for his orbit. During the second orbit, he heard and felt the engine sputter, and then go to idle. He immediately leveled the wings, turned the airplane toward the airport, exercised the throttle, and reported to an air traffic controller that he was inbound for landing. When he did not get the expected engine rpm, he again applied carburetor heat. He slowed the airplane to the best glide speed, and again exercised the throttle. A rise in manifold pressure was noted, but not rpm, when he increased the throttle. After determining that he could not make the airport, he decided to land on a city street. He tried to avoid power lines and telephone cables in his flight path, but was unsuccessful. The airplane subsequently impacted the ground at a 35-degree nose down angle, skidded to a stop, and caught fire shortly thereafter. During a postaccident inspection of the engine, no anomalies were noted that would have precluded normal operation. The pilot stated that he completed a thorough preflight. The airplane had more than 1/2 tank of fuel in the left wing, and just over 1/4 tank of fuel in the right wing. The fuel gauges agreed with the visual inspection. A graph in the Federal Aviation Administration Special Airworthiness Information Bulletin (SAIB) CE-09-35 illustrated that the conditions encountered in this accident were at the boundary of the areas for serious icing for both glide and cruise power. Given the lack of any mechanical anomalies it is likely that the formation of carburetor ice resulted in the loss of engine power.

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

The pilot's delayed use of carburetor heat while operating in conditions conducive to carburetor icing.

Full narrative available

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