On February 12, 1996, approximately 1600 eastern standard time, a North American P-51D, N551MR, collided with a tree and the ground while on final approach to the Naked Lady Ranch Airstrip, Palm City, Florida. The flight operated under the provisions of Title 14 CFR Part 91, and visual flight rules. No flight plan was filed for the personal flight, and visual meteorological conditions prevailed. The private pilot was seriously injured, and the aircraft was destroyed by a post crash fire. The flight departed Leeward Air Ranch Ocala, Florida, about 1510. Use your browsers 'back' function to return to synopsisReturn to Query Page
The pilot had been performing aerial work at Leeward Air Ranch, and was returning home to the Naked Lady Ranch. A prelanding check, which included lowering the landing gear and the flaps, was completed. While on final approach, he attempted to add power, but there was no response. The propeller was windmilling, and the pilot said that the engine had lost all power. The pilot stated that the boost pump was on, he switched the fuel tanks, used the primer, and retracted the flaps. He stated that the airplane could not glide to the airfield, so he tried to maneuver through a yard to avoid a stand of trees. The airplane struck an oak tree and cartwheeled. According to the pilot, the airplane was destroyed by a post crash fire.
According to the FAA Aviation Safety Inspector the functional engine examination revealed that the carburetor idle was improperly adjusted which would result in depletion of the fuel in the carburetor with the throttle at idle, and a delayed response of the engine to throttle movement, from the idle position.