NYC97LA029
NYC97LA029

On December 14, 1996, about 1358 eastern standard time, a Cessna T210M, N1929M, was substantially damaged when it impacted terrain during a forced landed near Charlottesville, Virginia. The certificated private pilot and two passenger were not injured; three passengers received minor injuries. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed for the personal flight that departed Greenville, South Carolina, destined for Leesburg, Virginia, and conducted under 14 CFR Part 91.

According to the pilot, while en route at 11,500 feet msl, he encountered "severe" headwinds and decided to divert to Charlottesville to refuel because "I don't ever like going below 10 gallons per side." The pilot reported that 2 to 3 minutes into his descent for Charlottesville, the engine lost power. He switched from the left to right fuel tank and power was restored; however, at 4,500 feet msl, a second loss of power occurred. Unable to glide to the airport, the pilot executed a forced landing to a cow pasture, about 1 mile short of the airport.

FAA examination of the airplane revealed the fuel tanks were empty.

The pilot reported the accident could have been prevented by "proper fuel calculating along with a fuel computer installed because of the frequency-distances-complexity of the average mission."

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