CHI00LA028
CHI00LA028

On November 11, 1999, at 1600 central standard time, a Shaffer Evans Volksplane, N78VS, piloted by a non-certificated pilot, sustained substantial damage during an in-flight collision with the terrain, following a loss of engine power near Stanley, North Dakota. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the accident. The local flight was operating under the provisions of 14 CFR Part 91 and was not on a flight plan. The non-rated pilot, the sole occupant, sustained serious injuries. The flight departed Stanley Municipal Airport, Stanley, North Dakota at 1545.

According to the non-rated pilot's written statement, he arrived at the Stanley Municipal Airport at 1130, inspected the airplane, and filled the fuel tank. The non-rated pilot reported that he was practicing low and high-speed taxi operations on the accident day. The non-rated pilot stated that he practiced taxing until 1400 when he stopped for lunch. The non-rated pilot reported that he returned to the airport, and resumed taxi operations, at 1500. The non-rated pilot stated that at approximately 1545 the airplane became airborne and there was not enough runway remaining to land. The non-rated pilot reported that he continued to fly the aircraft, entered a traffic pattern, and when the airplane was on final approach to the runway the engine lost total power. The non-rated pilot reported that he landed the airplane in a rolling agricultural field, on a southerly heading.

The non-rated pilot reported that he did not have any flight time prior to the accident flight and did not have an aviation medical or student pilot certificate.

Examination of the engine revealed that there was no fuel present throughout the engine and its fuel system. The crankshaft was turned through several turns and thumb compression was verified on all cylinders. Ignition leads were examined and all produced spark. The spark plugs exhibited no fouling.

The accident aircraft had a fuel capacity of 8-gallons. According to a distributor of Volkswagen engine conversions, the fuel burn rate for a 1600cc-type engine, at 3,100 rpm, is 3.5 gallons per hour.

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