On May 8, 1993, at 1515 eastern daylight time, a Fairchild 24G, N16897, collided with the ground while attempting a forced landing in a field near Athens, Tennessee. Visual weather conditions prevailed at the time of the accident. The personal flight operated under 14 CFR Part 91 with no flight plan filed. The airplane sustained substantial damage, and the pilot was not injured. The flight departed Athens at 1510 hours.

According to the pilot, the flight had been delayed because of rain showers in the immediate area and he taxied for several minutes before attempting a takeoff. Prior to the attempted takeoff, the pilot completed a runup. After climbing to 250 feet, the pilot reported a loss of engine power. The pilot managed to restart the engine for a few seconds but the engine quit again. The pilot started a left turn towards the airport, but collided with the ground about 300 yards short of the runway.

An examination of the engine assembly failed to disclose a mechanical malfunction or a component failure. A review of the weather information disclosed that weather conditions were favorable for the formation of carburetor ice. (see attached icing probability curves) The pilot did not report receiving a weather briefing. During a subsequent telephone conversation with the pilot, he stated that normal takeoff and climb procedures were followed.

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