On May 29, 2010, about 1030 central daylight time, a single-engine Cessna 140 airplane, N76287, received substantial damage after a forced landing following a loss of engine power shortly after takeoff from the Amelia Earhart Airport (K59), Atchison, Kansas. The commercial rated pilot, sole occupant, was not injured. The airplane was registered to and operated by a private individual. Day visual meteorological conditions prevailed and no flight plan was filed for the 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 personal flight.

In a telephone interview with the pilot, he stated that he had just departed K59, when the engine “just quit.” He stated that he applied carburetor heat, and switched (fuel) tanks, to no avail. He then elected to conduct a force landing on a nearby road. During the hard landing the airplane’s landing gear collapsed, and the airplane impacted and came to rest in a ditch.

An examination of the airplane was conducted by a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) inspector. The inspector reported that fuel was visible in the left wing fuel tank; however, the amount of fuel in right wing fuel tank could not be verified, due to the way the airplane was sitting without its landing gear. Fuel sumped from each tank appeared clean and free of contaminates. Additionally, fuel was found in the engine’s carburetor. The engine was rotated by hand and continuity thought the engine was verified. Both left and right magneto’s appeared to function properly.

A review of the information found on a Carburetor Icing Probability Chart; and given the atmospheric conditions prevailing during take-off, revealed that the airplane was operating within the "moderate or serious icing - cruise or descent power" range.

A reason for the loss of engine power was not determined.

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