On March 24, 2002, about 1400 eastern standard time, a Cessna 182C, N8667T, was substantially damaged during a forced landing near Smith Mountain Lake Airport (W91), Moneta, Virginia. The certificated commercial pilot was not injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and no flight plan was filed for the parachuting flight conducted under 14 CFR Part 91. Use your browsers 'back' function to return to synopsisReturn to Query Page
According to the pilot's written statement, about 1330, he departed W91 with parachutists. After reaching a sufficient altitude, the parachutists jumped, and the pilot returned to the airport. During the descent, about 2,500 feet msl, the engine began to "sputter and cough." The pilot thought carburetor ice caused the power loss, and performed emergency procedures, which included the application of carburetor heat. The engine did not regain power, and the pilot planned an emergency landing to a field. As the pilot approached the field and began to flare, the engine power returned, and he performed a go-around.
During the go-around, about 50 feet agl, the engine began to "sputter and cough" again. The pilot then performed a forced landing to a smaller field with an up-sloping incline. During the landing, the nose gear collapsed, and the airplane came to rest upright. The pilot further stated that he departed with 12 gallons of fuel, and did not experience any pre-impact mechanical malfunctions with the airplane.
A Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) inspector observed the airplane situated on sloping terrain, and the right wing was pointed down-slope. He noted that the nose landing gear had collapsed into the firewall. The inspector added that he did not find any fuel in the left fuel tank, and observed less than 1 gallon of fuel in the right fuel tank. He did not find any fuel in the fuel line to the carburetor, nor the gascolator. The inspector did observe approximately 2 tablespoons of fuel in the carburetor. Additionally, he stated that there was no evidence of fuel leakage. The pilot told the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) inspector that he either experienced carburetor ice or ran out of fuel.