LAX96LA338
LAX96LA338

On September 17, 1996, at 1718 hours Pacific daylight time, a Cessna 152, N94381, nosed over in an open field after executing an emergency landing 2 miles west of the Fresno Chandler Airport, Fresno, California. The emergency landing was precipitated by a total loss of power. The pilot was conducting a visual flight rules instructional solo flight to Oakland International Airport, Oakland, California. The airplane, operated by Sierra Academy of Aeronautics, Oakland, sustained substantial damage. The certificated private pilot was not injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed. The flight originated at Oakland International Airport as a round robin cross-country flight to Fresno Air Terminal, Fresno, at an undetermined time. The flight departed Fresno Air Terminal at 1703.

The pilot told a Fresno County Sheriff's Deputy that when the airplane was climbing through 4,000 feet mean sea level (msl), the engine sustained a total loss of power. The pilot attempted to restart the engine, but without success. The Fresno departure controller provided a radar vector toward the Fresno Chandler Airport, but the airplane's altitude was insufficient to negotiate a landing on the airport.

The pilot elected to land in an open field. The airplane touched down normally and during the landing rollout, the airplane's nose gear dug in the dirt and the airplane nosed over onto its back.

The deputy reported that the airplane touched down in a southerly direction. The wheel's ground tracks continued for about 100 yards until the airplane became inverted.

An Federal Aviation Administation airworthiness inspector from the Fresno Flight Standards District Office conducted the on-scene investigation. On September 20, 1996, the inspector reported the engine examination disclosed a bearing had turned on the crankshaft which covered the crankshaft journal's oil passage and the connecting rod separated.

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