NTSB Identification: WPR11FA331
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Sunday, July 17, 2011 in Winslow, AZ
Probable Cause Approval Date: 01/15/2013
Aircraft: MOONEY M20F, registration: N3534X
Injuries: 2 Fatal.

NTSB investigators either traveled in support of this investigation or conducted a significant amount of investigative work without any travel, and used data obtained from various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

During a cross-country flight, the pilot landed at the accident airport to refuel. After the airplane was refueled, witnesses saw the airplane depart toward the east. After takeoff, the pilot advised via radio that he was returning to the airport due to a rough running engine. Witnesses near the airport saw the airplane make a steep turn and then descend into an uncontrolled spiral. The airplane impacted in an inverted position at the departure end of the runway and slid about 65 yards. Postaccident examination of the airplane and engine revealed that the fuel injector servo had a substantial amount of rust and contamination inside the unit. The pilot had an issue with water contamination in the fuel system previously and suspected that he needed to replace the fuel bladders.

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

A loss of engine power due to fuel system contamination, and the pilot’s subsequent failure to maintain an adequate airspeed, which resulted in a loss of control.

Full narrative available

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