FTW96LA065
FTW96LA065

On December 12, 1995, at 0757 mountain standard time, a Cessna 182E, N9376X, was destroyed when it collided with terrain during a forced landing at Erie, Colorado. The private pilot was seriously injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time, and flight plan was not filed for the personal flight being conducted under Title 14 CFR Part 91. The flight was originating at the time of the accident.

The pilot said that on the day before the accident, he drained "all moisture and foreign material" from the airplane's fuel tank quick drains and the main fuel sump. On the morning of the accident, he again drained "a small amount of moisture" from the fuel drains. The pilot said he took off and near the departure end of runway 15, the engine lost power. By pumping the throttle, he was able to restart the engine but it lost power shortly thereafter. The pilot attempted to make a landing, but the airplane collided with terrain. A Federal Aviation Administration inspector said he saw no fuel leaking from the airplane, nor did he smell fuel at the accident site. Airport officials told the inspector they had not seen the airplane fly in the three years it had been based at the airport.

Representatives from Cessna Aircraft Company and Teledyne Continental Motors went to the accident site. They drained a quantity of water from the right fuel tank, and a mixture of fuel, water, and contaminants from the gascolator. They reported the seals around the fuel tank filler necks and caps were deteriorated. They also recovered the fuel sampler used by the pilot during the preflight inspection. It was aged and had a yellow discoloration.

In a meeting with the pilot, he stated he was en route to Van Aire Airpark in Brighton, Colorado, where the airplane was to receive an annual inspection. He admitted he was flying an airplane that did not have a current annual inspection, and that his biennial flight review had expired.

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