LAX05LA077
LAX05LA077

On January 27, 2005, about 1545 Pacific standard time, a Cessna 182P, N7337S, collided with trees during a forced landing near Chico, California. The pilot/owner was operating the airplane under the provisions of 14 CFR Part 91. The private pilot and one passenger sustained minor injuries; the airplane sustained substantial damage. The personal cross-country flight departed Novato, California, at an undetermined time with a planned destination of the Ranchero airport near Chico. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and an instrument flight rules (IFR) flight plan had been filed.

The pilot stated that in cruise flight he selected 22 inches of manifold pressure and 2,200 revolutions per minute (rpm). As he descended, he reduced the manifold pressure to 16-17 inches, pulled the carburetor heat on, and left the rpm at 2,200. He was about 2 miles from the airport, and making a 45-degree angle to the runway, which is the local approach to the runway. He had one notch of flaps selected.

The pilot said that the engine died as he descended through 600 feet. He did not recall if the propeller was windmilling. He didn't see or feel anything; he did not hear backfiring, clanking, or sputtering. He moved the throttle, mixture, and propeller controls to the full forward position. He checked that the primer was in. He turned the key to start, but the engine did not start. He raised the flaps after the engine quit producing power. He selected full down flaps about 20 feet above the trees.

After the airplane came to rest, the pilot secured the master switch, magnetos, and fuel. The airplane was in a nose low position, and fuel flowed out of the vent.

A National Transportation Safety Board investigator supervised an examination of the engine at Plain Parts, Pleasant Grove, California, on May 24, 2005

The investigator observed that the oil pan was crushed. Investigators removed the oil filter, and installed a replacement filter. They removed the top spark plugs, which were white/gray in appearance. They drained 4.5 ounces of a blue liquid from the gascolators; it was clear and contained no debris. Another investigator removed 1 ounce of fuel from the carburetor on a previous visit.

Investigators connected an external fuel tank to the forward doorpost fuel line. When they turned on the fuel, there was a minimal fuel flow observed out of the carburetor (where the plug was); it took several minutes for fuel to flow from the plug area. They were unable to get fuel to flow from the wing attach point (left side) fuel line. The line was compromised at the doorpost. They hooked up an external fuel line and tank to the carburetor fuel inlet. They started the engine, and ran it for several minutes with no discrepancies noted.

The pilot failed to submit a Pilot/Operator Aircraft Accident Report (NTSB Form 6120.1/2).

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