On May 24, 1995, at 1830 central daylight time (cdt), an Air Tractor AT301, N4353S, sustained substantial damage following a loss of engine power and subsequent forced landing on a field near Clark, South Dakota. The pilot reported no injuries. The local 14 CFR Part 137 aerial application flight originated from Clark County Airport at 1700 cdt without a flight plan. Visual meteorological conditions existed at the time of the accident.

In a detailed written statement, the pilot reported that the airplane was fueled and loaded with chemicals for an aerial application flight. He then departed Clark County Airport, flew to his destination, and began spraying. Almost done spraying the field and nearly out of chemicals, the pilot stated he noticed that the left fuel tank gauge read below 1/4 tank. He switched the selected fuel tank to the right tank, but the right fuel tank gauge read empty. The pilot stated he switched back to the left fuel tank and immediately headed back towards Clark County. The pilot stated, "I thought I would have enough [fuel] to get back."

Approximately eight miles from the airport, the low pressure warning light illuminated. The pilot stated he activated the hand fuel pump and prepared to make a forced landing on a road. "Before I was able to position myself for landing on the road the engine lost all power, and I was forced to land in a pasture," the pilot stated. After touchdown the pilot applied heavy braking in an effort to avoid impacting a fence. The airplane came to rest in an inverted position.

Use your browsers 'back' function to return to synopsis
Return to Query Page