NTSB Identification: CEN12LA424
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Sunday, July 08, 2012 in Bedford, IN
Probable Cause Approval Date: 10/09/2012
Aircraft: BELLANCA 7GCAA, registration: N8733V
Injuries: 1 Serious,1 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 departed on a 2-hour cross-country flight with the airplane's fuel tanks full. While at his destination airport, the pilot, who was a physician, received word that a patient was in critical condition and that he needed to return as soon as possible. The pilot stated that the fuel gauges indicated over half full; he departed on the return flight without refueling the airplane. During the return flight, the pilot had to divert around weather and noticed that the fuel gauges were registering considerably less than previously noted. He altered course to a nearby airport. Shortly thereafter, the engine sputtered and lost power due to fuel exhaustion. The pilot made a forced landing in a rough field, and the airplane nosed over.

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

The pilot's improper fuel management, which resulted in a loss of engine power due to fuel exhaustion. Contributing to the accident was the pilot’s self-induced pressure to return home.

Full narrative available

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