NTSB Identification: ANC11CA005
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Thursday, December 23, 2010 in Clear, AK
Probable Cause Approval Date: 05/26/2011
Aircraft: PIPER PA-18-150, registration: N40283
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 pilot reported that while in level cruise flight, the airplane's engine began to lose power, and then lost all power. He said he was unable to restart the engine, and selected a snow and tree-covered area as a forced landing site. During the forced landing, the airplane's left wing collided with a tree, resulting in substantial damage to the fuselage, empennage, and left wing. He said that at the time of the accident the outside air temperature was minus 22 degrees F, and that during his postaccident inspection of the airplane he discovered that the engine fuel gascolator filter had become blocked by ice crystals. He stated that there were no preaccident mechanical problems with the airplane, and noted that the accident might have been prevented if he had removed the gascolator during his preflight to check for ice crystals, or preheated the engine, and then drained the water from the gascolator.

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

The pilot's inadequate preflight inspection, which resulted in a loss of engine power due to water/ice in the fuel system.

Full narrative available

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