NTSB Identification: ERA12LA489
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Saturday, July 28, 2012 in Fayetteville, NC
Probable Cause Approval Date: 07/18/2013
Aircraft: BEECH A36TC, registration: N6672X
Injuries: 3 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.

While conducting a preflight inspection, the pilot observed that the right wing fuel tank was leaking at the sump on the underside of the wing. He also noted that there was no fuel in the right wing tank; however, the left wing tank contained about 33 gallons. The pilot then departed on a cross-country flight with the intention of landing at an intermediate airport that had appropriate maintenance services to have the fuel sump inspected. Upon reaching the intermediate airport, the pilot elected to continue to his original destination airport instead. While on final approach for landing at the destination airport, the engine experienced a total loss of power, and the pilot performed a forced landing to a field just short of the runway, resulting in substantial damage to the right wing. A postaccident examination of the airplane revealed that both left and right wing fuel tanks were intact and absent of fuel; however, fuel quantity indicators for the tanks read 1/8 and 1/4 full, respectively. Postaccident fuel consumption calculations indicated that the airplane should have consumed about 24 gallons of fuel during the accident flight, thus it is possible that there was less fuel than the pilot observed in the left tank before departure. During a test run after fuel was supplied, the engine started on the first attempt, and ran smoothly and continuously through all power settings with no anomalies observed.

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

The pilot’s improper fuel planning, which resulted in a total loss of engine power due to fuel exhaustion.

Full narrative available

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