LAX96LA213
LAX96LA213

On May 30, 1996, at 0630 hours Pacific daylight time, a Rockwell International S-2R, N8447V, operated by Inland Crop Dusters, Inc., experienced a total loss of engine power while performing an aerial application flight near Lost Hills, California. The commercial pilot made a forced landing in a rough field. The airplane was substantially damaged, and the pilot was not injured. The flight originated from a dirt airstrip near Lost Hills at 0600.

According to the pilot, during his last pass over the field the engine began to shake and lose power. The pilot initially attempted to make a precautionary landing on a nearby road, but aborted the plan upon observing traffic. The engine continued losing power, and the pilot made a forced landing in a grape field.

The pilot further reported that upon inspection of the engine, the number 4 cylinder head was found to have failed. The pilot opined that its failure had been "catastrophic," and was related to the fact that the cylinder on the Pratt & Whitney R-1340 engine was 50 years old.

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