MIA96LA141
MIA96LA141

On May 16, 1996, about 1009 eastern daylight time, a Piper PA-28-161, N9239B, registered to and operated by Flight Safety International, Inc., was substantially damaged during a forced landing about 22 nautical miles east-southeast of the Tallahassee Regional Airport, Tallahassee, Florida. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time and a VFR flight plan was filed and activated for the 14 CFR Part 91 instructional flight. The private-rated pilot, the sole occupant, was not injured. The flight originated at 0805 from the Vero Beach Municipal Airport, Vero Beach, Florida.

The pilot stated that while descending from 1,500 to 1,200 feet mean sea level to maintain VFR conditions, the engine experienced total loss of power. He executed the emergency procedures checklist but engine power was not restored. He executed a forced landing in a wooded area and the airplane came to rest upright resting against small trees. He further stated that the fuel selector was positioned to the "right" position from engine start to the time of the loss of power.

Examination of the airplane revealed that the left wing fuel tank was nearly full and the right wing fuel tank was found to contain less than 6 ounces of fuel. No signs of fuel leakage was noted from the right wing fuel tank. Additionally, the fuel line to the carburetor was found to be dry and the gascolator was drained and found to contain only 10 cc's of fuel.

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