NTSB Identification: ERA13LA060
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Saturday, November 17, 2012 in White Plains, NY
Probable Cause Approval Date: 07/23/2013
Aircraft: BEECH 35B33, registration: N8519M
Injuries: 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.

On final approach for landing, the pilot observed that the airplane was high, and he performed a slip in order to lose altitude. During the maneuver, the engine lost power, and the pilot performed a forced landing to a parking lot. Postaccident examination revealed the fuel selector switch was in the off position; however, the pilot said that, after the accident, he turned the fuel selector from an unknown position to OFF and that he could not recall the prior position. The examination also found that the right wing fuel tank contained about 14 gallons of fuel, and the left tank was empty. Although the left wing tank was ruptured during impact, no evidence of fuel leakage or odor was found at the site. The airplane was equipped with a non-standard engine and propeller and did not have a Supplemental Type Certificate for the installation. Further, the pilot did not have fuel consumption information for the current engine-propeller installation; thus, the pilot likely misjudged the fuel consumption for the flight. It is likely that the fuel selector was positioned to the left tank, which had become very low on fuel. The slip maneuver aggravated the low fuel condition of the left wing fuel tank, and the airplane was starved of fuel, which resulted in the loss of engine power. Additionally, the pilot's failure to utilize the auxiliary fuel pump per the pilot operating handbook during air start most likely prevented the engine from restarting. Postaccident examination revealed no anomalies that would have precluded the normal operation of the airplane or engine components.

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

The pilot's improper fuel management and his excessive slip maneuver, which led to fuel starvation and a total loss of engine power, and his failure to activate the electric boost pump during the attempted engine restart.

Full narrative available

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