SEA06LA037
SEA06LA037

On January 5, 2006, about 1035 Pacific standard time, a Cessna 152, N444QA, registered to and operated by Kelso Flight Services as a 14 CFR Part 91 maintenance check flight in the local area, experienced a loss of engine power while returning to the Kelso-Longview Airport, Kelso, Washington. The pilot initiated a forced landing to a sand pit about one mile south of the airport. During the landing roll, the airplane nosed over. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time and no flight plan was filed. The aircraft was substantially damaged and the commercial pilot, the sole occupant, was not injured. The flight departed from Kelso about 50 minutes prior to the accident.

During a telephone interview and in a subsequent written statement, the pilot reported that the purpose of the flight was to take the aircraft out on a maintenance check flight as the aircraft had not flown much in the preceding three months. After about 50 minutes, the pilot was returning to the airport. The pilot stated that he had checked for carburetor ice several times during the flight. During the return flight to the airport in mist, the pilot applied carburetor heat and reduced power to descend from 2,000 feet to 1,100 feet. The pilot was setting up for a 45 degree entry to runway 12 when he closed the carburetor heat and applied power. The pilot stated that the engine did not respond and would not "make power." The pilot was unable to get power back to the engine, which eventually lost all power before he initiated a forced landing to an open sand pit. During the landing roll, the airplane nosed over.

A post-crash inspection of the engine by an NTSB Senior Air Safety Investigator after the aircraft was removed from the sand pit to a facility located in Redmond, Oregon, found that the engine was able to be started. Due to impact damage, the engine was run only for a short time before it was shut down.

At 1035, the Kelso-Longview METAR weather was reported as a temperature of 48 degrees F, dew point of 37 degrees F. The altimeter was 30.23" Hg. The wind was from 150 degrees at five knots. Scattered clouds were at 8,000 feet. The carburetor icing probability chart indicates, for this temperature and dew point, a probability of serious carburetor icing at cruise power.

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