ERA10CA214
ERA10CA214

The pilot stated that he received a weather briefing prior to departing on the 277-nautical mile cross-country flight. The airplane's departure fuel level was "above the tabs, but not full." Information from the manufacturer's Pilot's Operating Handbook (POH) indicated that, when the fuel level was at the tabs, the fuel quantity was 35 gallons. The maximum usable fuel capacity was 48 gallons. The pilot stated that the weight of his baggage precluded him from operating with full fuel tanks, and that he encountered "stronger than expected headwinds" along the route of flight. About 2030, when the airplane was 1 mile from the destination airport, the engine "quit." The pilot executed a forced landing on a road, and the airplane sustained substantial damage to the fuselage and both wings. Examination by a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) inspector revealed that each of the airplane's fuel tanks contained approximately 1 to 2 cups of fuel. No fuel was found in the gascolator or the carburetor. The pilot reported there were no mechanical malfunctions or failures, and in an interview with the FAA inspector, the pilot stated that he should have stopped for fuel en route. According to the POH, at 75 percent power, and operating with a "lean mixture," the airplane's fuel consumption rate was 10 gallons per hour.

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