ANC07LA016
ANC07LA016

On January 17, 2007, about 1550 Alaska standard time, a Douglas C54G-DC airplane, N82FA, sustained substantial damage following an in-flight engine fire and subsequent gear-up landing on the tundra, about 5 miles west of Nenana, Alaska. The airplane was being operated by Brooks Fuel Inc., Fairbanks, Alaska, as a visual flight rules (VFR) flight under Title 14, CFR Part 125, when the accident occurred. The airline transport certificated pilot and the commercial certificated co-pilot were not injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and a VFR flight plan was filed. The flight departed the Fairbanks International Airport, Fairbanks, about 1530.

During a telephone conversation with the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) investigator-in-charge (IIC) on January 17, the owner of the company said the pilot reported that during cruise flight, the left inboard (number 2) engine started running rough, and he elected to shut it down and return to the Fairbanks airport. He said the pilot told him that during the shutdown procedure, the engine caught fire, and that the fire extinguishing system was activated. According to the owner, the pilot said the fire flared up a second time, and unable to extinguish the fire, he elected to land the airplane gear-up on the snow-covered tundra. The pilot told the owner that once on the ground, the left wing was consumed by fire.

An inspection by company maintenance personnel revealed that an overhauled engine cylinder had failed at its base, resulting in a fire. The airplane was not examined by the NTSB due to its remote location.

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