NTSB Identification: WPR11LA254
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Wednesday, June 08, 2011 in Santa Clarita, CA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 10/04/2011
Aircraft: CESSNA 177, registration: N2301Y
Injuries: 2 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.
Prior to the flight, the pilot visually checked the fuel quantity in the fuel tanks and the left fuel tank fuel quantity was within one inch from the filler neck, and the right fuel tank appeared to be half full. As the flight neared the area of the accident site, both the pilot and passenger observed the right fuel gauge indicate zero, followed by the left. While attempting to maneuver around clouds to descend to an airport the pilot saw beneath the clouds, the engine started to sputter. The pilot switched the fuel selector from the both position to the left fuel tank and the engine stopped almost immediately. He then switched to the right fuel tank, but the engine did not restart. The pilot initiated a forced landing onto a road, which resulted in substantial damage to the airplane's wings and horizontal stabilizer. A postaccident examination of the airframe and engine by a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Inspector revealed no fuel in either fuel tank and about 1/2 cup of fuel was drained from the fuel strainer. The FAA inspector also observed a placard on the instrument panel which stated "... [the] Tuned Exhaust System installed on this aircraft may cause the aircraft to burn more fuel at certain power settings. It is the Pilot's responsibility to determine what, if any, change in fuel flow exists and to plan accordingly."
The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be: The pilot's inadequate preflight verification of the fuel quantity and his inadequate fuel consumption calculations, which resulted in fuel exhaustion. Full narrative available
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