On July 22, 1996, about 1515 eastern daylight time, a Cessna 210L, N1623X, registered to Gallops Inc., Tampa, Florida, operating as a 14 CFR Part 91, positioning flight, en route from St. Petersburg, crashed in the vicinity of Fort Myers, Florida. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and no flight plan was filed. The airplane was substantially damaged. The two commercial pilots were not injured.

On final approach to runway 13, the pilot stated, that the airplane's engine lost power. The pilot elected to land in a river, and impacted the water about 2.5 miles from the runway. The airplane was being repositioned and was returning to Fort Myers empty.

According to the FAA inspector's statement, the recovery crew that had retrieved the airplane from the river, reported that they "drained no fuel" from the airplane's fuel tanks. The only fluid that the recovery crew found in the fuel tanks was "river water." There was no entry on the NTSB Form 6120.1/2, that indicated the amount of fuel onboard the airplane at takeoff.

The airplane's owner told the FAA inspector, "...that when the aircraft was lifted from the river the left hand wing fuel cap was missing." The fuel selector valve in the cockpit was found selected to the "left" wing tank. There were no other breaches found throughout the fuel system. The PIC (pilot-in-command) stated that he checked the fuel caps and fuel level during preflight inspection. The copilot told the FAA that the PIC "did not check the fuel level or caps during the preflight, because "there was nothing available for them to use to reach the top of the aircraft wing." The airplane's engine was test run. No discrepancies were found with the engine during the test run.

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