CHI94LA225
CHI94LA225

On July 8, 1994, at 1700 central daylight time, a Beech K35, N153C, sustained substantial damage following a loss of engine power and subsequent forced landing short of runway 18 at Grand Rapids Airport, Grand Rapids, Michigan. The private pilot and safety pilot received minor injuries. The flight operated in visual meteorological conditions under 14 CFR Part 91 on an IFR flight plan. The flight originated in Ionia, Michigan, en route to Grand Rapids, Michigan, with the intent to practice instrument approaches.

The pilot stated they departed Ionia Airport at 1600, performed a VOR check off of the Grand Rapids VOR, and then received a clearance for an ILS approach to runway 26L at Grand Rapids. After completing three practice approaches, the pilot states he removed the instrument practice hood in preparation for a climb to 3000 feet MSL to return to Ionia. He states that seconds after he removed the hood he noticed that the engine was not developing power. The pilot then initiated emergency procedures for an engine out. After declaring an emergency to air traffic control, the pilot states he concentrated on returning to Grand Rapids to land on runway 28. Realizing that he would not be able to make it back to the runwy, he leveled the wings and raised the nose in preparation for impact with the ground. After impact, the airplane skidded to rest.

A postaccident inspection revealed the fuel selector to be in the left inboard position. A visual inspection of the fuel tanks revealed the left outboard tank was empty, the left inboard tank was low to empty, the right outboard tank was low to empty, and the right inboard tank was full. No fuel was present in the fuel line connected to the fuel pump. All tanks were found intact and there was no evidence of a fuel spill at the scene.

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