FTW94LA134
FTW94LA134

On April 23, 1994, approximately 1015 mountain daylight time, a Weatherly 201C, N1295W, was destroyed when it impacted terrain while maneuvering near Sterling, Colorado. The pilot was seriously injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed.

According to the airplane operator, the pilot was a new company employee, and this was his third flight in this airplane make and model. It was also his second practice flight, water spraying a field next to the airport. The chief pilot was observing the pilot's performance. He told a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) inspector that as the airplane made an approach, the engine "sounded rough, like it was running out of gas." Several other witnesses said the engine was not operating. The chief pilot said the airplane pulled up, banked right, rolled inverted, and descended into the ground in a near vertical attitude.

According to the FAA inspector, he found less than one gallon of fuel in the right tank and the left tank was empty. The fuel selector valve was on the right tank. The operator said the airplane held 65 gallons (25 gallons in the right tank, 40 gallons in the left tank) of useable fuel, and the engine consumed 21 to 26 gallons per hour, depending on the power setting. The operator further stated the airplane took off at 0815 and he remembered the pilot saying he switched tanks at 0930. The accident occurred about 1015.

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