On August 15, 2001, at 2106 central daylight time, a Cessna 177RG, N27JS, operated by a commercial pilot, sustained substantial damage when it struck trees and impacted into a field 1/2 mile north of the Sikeston Airport (SIK), Sikeston, Missouri, during a forced landing. The airplane was on initial climb after takeoff from SIK when it experienced a loss of engine power. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the accident. The personal flight was being conducted under the provisions of 14 CFR Part 91 without a flight plan. The pilot and pilot-rated passenger on board reported no injuries. The cross country flight was originating at the time of the accident.

In his written statement, the pilot said they were climbing following takeoff from Sikeston Airport and were approximately 500 feet when the airplane's engine lost power. The pilot said he turned the airplane around toward the departure airport, but determined he could not make it back. The pilot said he landed the airplane in a pasture.

A Federal Aviation Administration inspector examined the airplane at the accident site. The airplane was resting in a field 65 yards from a clutch of small trees. The trees showed broken trunks and branches. The airplane was resting upright and canted 45 degrees to the right. The fuselage was bent upward aft of the airplane's cabin. The right horizontal stabilizer and elevator were bent upward. The vertical and horizontal stabilizers showed skin wrinkles. The outboard right wing, wing tip and right aileron were bent upward. The right main landing gear was broken aft. The lower portion of the firewall was bent aft. The airplane's propeller showed no damage The airplane's fuel selector had the left wing tank selected. The left and right wing tanks showed fuel. Fuel drained from the left tank had water present. Flight control continuity was confirmed. An examination of the airplane's engine revealed that three of the wires coming from the back of the dual magneto were chafed and burnt. There were arcing marks on the connector lead covers going to three of the top spark plugs. No other anomalies were found.

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