On June 16, 2002, at 1951 eastern daylight time, a Cessna 152, N68437, registered to Carolina Inc., operating as a 14 CFR Part 91 personal flight, experienced a reported loss of engine power in the vicinity of Greenville, North Carolina. The pilot made a forced landing to a cotton field and the airplane nosed over. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the accident and no flight plan was filed. The airplane sustained substantial damage. The private pilot reported minor injury and the passenger reported no injuries. The flight originated from Ocracoke Island Airport, Ocracoke, North Carolina, at 1805.

The pilot stated he rented the airplane in Louisburg, North Carolina (LHZ). He conducted a preflight inspection and the fuel tanks appeared to be topped off. He conducted a standard magneto check and engine run-up and departed Louisburg at 1040 direct to Winston-Salem, North Carolina. His cruise altitude was 2,500 feet and the flight took about 1 hour 10 minutes. Review of the First In Flight Aviation Dispatch Checkout Form indicated the pilot's expected departure time was 09:38. Review of transcripts obtained from Winston-Salem Control Tower revealed that N68437 was cleared to land on runway 22 at 10:52:20.

Upon landing the pilot requested the airplane be topped off with fuel and twelve gallons of fuel was added to the airplane. He departed INT at 11:28:05, enroute to Ocracoke Island Airport, Ocracoke, North Carolina. At 11:30:14, the pilot informed the tower, ok uh we're gonna amend our flight plan I'm gonna come back in I'd like to uh be down wind for runway 22 I'm gonna dump some water I've got on board. The pilot was instructed to enter left base and was cleared to land at 11:30:25. After rearranging some weight, and off-loading a jug of water the pilot requested clearance to depart at 11:35:45. He was cleared for takeoff at 11:35:54, and estimated the flight to Ocracoke Island Airport would take 1 hour 58 minutes. He landed at Ocracoke Island Airport without incident. No fuel was available at Ocracoke Island Airport. The pilot estimated about an 1/8 tank of fuel (4 gallons per side) in the left and right main fuel tank. He departed Ocracoke Island Airport at 18:05 and climbed to 2,000 feet enroute to Greenville, North Carolina, to obtain fuel. About 5 miles from the airport, he started a descent for a 45-degree entry to the downwind for runway 20. The engine started sputtering and cutting in and out. The pilot realized he could not make it to the airport and initiated a forced landing to a cotton field. The airplane collided with the ground, and nosed over.

The field examination of the wreckage revealed that, no fuel stains were present on the tops of the wings and both fuel caps were installed securely. The fuel sump drains were both removed revealing complete absence of fuel. The fuel strainer bowl was removed and about 1/3 cup of fuel was present in the bowl. The fuel selector was placed in the on position and no fuel drained in the bowl. The carburetor finger strainer and line were removed with no evidence of fuel. The drain plug of the float type carburetor was removed and no fuel was present. Examination of the engine revealed drive train continuity, operational ignition system, and no obvious damage other than that caused during the forced landing.

Examination of the wreckage revealed the tachometer read 3283.0. The hour meter displayed 00654.3. Review of First In Flight Aviation Aircraft Time Justification Report and Rental Dispatch Checkout Form revealed the current tachometer stop time by the renter previous to the accident pilot, and current tachometer time at dispatch to the accident pilot was 3283.28. The current hobbs meter time at dispatch to the accident pilot was 649.90.

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