FAA Flight Standards District Office: FAA San Antonio FSDO-17
NTSB Identification: GAA16CA347
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Wednesday, June 22, 2016 in Burnet, TX
Probable Cause Approval Date: 08/31/2016
Aircraft: PIPER PA 12, registration: N223CG
Injuries: 2 Uninjured.
NTSB investigators used data provided by various entities, including, but not limited to, the Federal Aviation Administration and/or the operator and did not travel in support of this investigation to prepare this aircraft accident report.
The flight instructor of the amphibious float-equipped airplane reported that after an instructional lesson, while returning to the airport, the student pilot was too low "while turning base leg" of the traffic pattern so the student pilot moved the throttle forward to add power, but the engine did not respond. The flight instructor further reported that he took control of the airplane and made an off airport landing. During the landing, the airplane impacted a low hanging tree limb.
The airplane sustained substantial damage to the right wing.
A postaccident examination by the Federal Aviation Administration aviation safety inspector revealed that the fuel tanks contained less than one gallon of fuel on board the airplane.
The pilot reported that there were no preimpact mechanical failures or malfunctions with the airframe or engine that would have precluded normal operation.
The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident as follows:
The student pilot's failure to maintain adequate fuel levels, which resulted in fuel starvation, a loss of engine power, and a forced landing. Contributing to the accident was the flight instructor's failure to monitor the fuel levels.