On December 1, 1997, at 1900 eastern standard time, a Cessna A152, N758YR, was substantially damaged during a forced landing and collision with a light pole near Moriches, New York. The certificated flight instructor and private pilot received serious injuries. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed for the flight that originated at the Francis S. Gabreski Airport (FOK), New York, about 1745. No flight plan had been filed for the instructional flight conducted under 14 CFR Part 91. Use your browsers 'back' function to return to synopsisReturn to Query Page
According to the flight instructor, the purpose of the flight was to provide the private pilot with an area familiarization and begin "a week-long biennial flight review." The instructor preflighted the airplane and measured the fuel quantity with a calibrated stick. He measured 8 gallons of fuel in one tank, and about 7 gallons in the other tank.
The instructor stated that after cruising at 2,700 feet for about 1 hour, "...we lost all or most engine power output. All attempts to restore engine power were unsuccessful. The engine backfired 4 or 5 times after that." He tuned in the Brookhaven Airport frequency and turned on the runway light. He further stated, "I decided that I could not make the runway 33 fighting strong winds, and I turned toward a well lighted parking lot...turning short base I saw high trees on the west side of the site and elected to land on the east side which turned out to be a narrow road."
During the final approach the airplane's left wing struck a light pole and the instructor then "lost control."
According to a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Inspector, examination of the airplane revealed that one wing fuel tank was ripped open, but neither wing fuel tank contained fuel and there was no odor of fuel on the ground. The FAA Inspector also stated that one of the police officers that initially responded to the accident, also a pilot, reported no odor of fuel at the scene. Examination of the propeller revealed no rotational scoring on the blades.
The instructor reported that the airplane's fuel consumption was about 5.5 gallons per hour, and that of the 26 gallon fuel capacity, 24.5 gallons were useable.
The instructor provided a refueling summary of the accident airplane, which included Hobbs and engine tachometer hours, and the number of gallons added during the past 32 hours of operations. The summary did not include any dates; however, the instructor stated that this was the current refueling record of the airplane. Hand written notes on the summary revealed that most refuelings did not fill the tanks up, but refueled the airplane to 18, 19, or 20 gallons. At a Tach time of 48.9, the fuel tanks were filled. The next refueling of the tanks to a full level occurred at a Tach time of 56.6. During the 7.7 hours, 52.9 gallons of fuel were added. When divided out, this provided a rate of 6.87 gallons per hour (GPH). According to the summary, the last refueling occurred at a Tach time of 66.1, where the airplane was refueled to a total of 20 gallons. At the time of the accident, the approximate Tach time was 68.0.
According to a carburetor icing probability chart, the conditions at the time of the accident were conducive for "serious icing at cruise power."