ATL07CA050
ATL07CA050

The pilot stated he obtained fuel on March 9, 2007, at Muscle Shoals, Alabama, and continued on the personal flight to Chattanooga, Tennessee. The pilot stated he did not obtain any fuel before departing Chattanooga on March 12, 2007, en-route to Kentucky Dam State Park. The pilot's final destination was Memphis, Tennessee. No flight plan was filed, however a computer weather briefing was obtained. The pilot departed Chattanooga at 1100 and flew to the south end of Kentucky Lake. The airplane was in cruise flight at 3,000 feet heading north when the engine sputtered. The pilot switched the fuel tanks, turned the carburetor heat on, and turned towards Henry County Airport located in the vicinity of Paris, Tennessee. The pilot contacted the fixed base operator (FBO) 9 miles from the airport on the UNICOM radio frequency and was informed the winds were favoring runway 20. The pilot contacted the FBO on base leg to the runway, requested the winds, and the airplane experienced a loss of engine power. The pilot realized he could not make the runway, and made a hard left turn towards a cornfield. The nose landing gear collided with a berm/furrow in the corn field, the airplane bounced, and nosed over inverted.

Two lineman located at the airport observed the accident. One lineman called the 911 emergency operator to report the accident, and the other lineman went to the accident site to assist. The lineman and a deputy sheriff arrived at the crash site. The deputy sheriff took a statement from the pilot before the pilot and his wife were transported to a local area hospital. The lineman heard the pilot state to the deputy sheriff, that the pilot had run the airplane out of fuel. The pilot also stated that he came up short on his landing while attempting to make it to the airport.

The FAA arrived at the accident site on March 12, 2007, and examined the airplane. No smell or leakage of fuel was present at the crash site. The FAA returned to the accident site on March 13, 2007, and examined the airplane after it had been turned over by recovery personnel. The left and right fuel caps were removed and had a tight seal. The left and right fuel tanks were not ruptured and no fuel was present. About one half ounce of fuel was drained from the left and right fuel tank drains. No leakage or browning of vegetation was present at the crash site. The airplane was recovered to the airport and secured for an engine run. Five gallons of fuel was added to the left main fuel tank. The engine was started, ran, and shut down.

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