Friday, March 09, 2018

Piper PA-32R-301T, N8191B: Accident occurred March 08, 2018 in Big Spring, Texas

Additional Participating Entity:
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Lubbock, Texas

Aviation Accident Factual Report - National Transportation Safety Board:

Investigation Docket - National Transportation Safety Board:

Location: Big Spring, TX
Accident Number: GAA18CA152
Date & Time: 03/08/2018, 2015 CST
Registration: N8191B
Aircraft: PIPER PA 32R
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Fuel exhaustion
Injuries: 1 Minor
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal

The pilot reported that although the airplane's fuel gauge was intermittent, he decided to depart on a night cross-country flight, and during the flight the engine lost power. He declared an emergency and selected a road to land on. During the landing, the airplane struck powerline wires and impacted the ground and came to rest inverted.

The airplane sustained substantial damage to both wings, the engine mounts, the rudder and the horizontal stabilizer.

Examination of the airplane by a Federal Aviation Administration Aviation Safety Inspector revealed that the fuel selector was set to the right-wing tank, and there was no usable fuel in the right-wing tank. The left-wing tank contained usable fuel.

Per 14 CFR 91.205, no person may operate a powered civil aircraft with a standard category U.S. airworthiness certificate with an inoperative fuel gauge.

Pilot Information

Certificate: Private
Age: 33, Male
Airplane Rating(s): Single-engine Land
Seat Occupied: Left
Other Aircraft Rating(s): None
Restraint Used: 3-point
Instrument Rating(s): Airplane
Second Pilot Present: No
Instructor Rating(s): None
Toxicology Performed: No
Medical Certification: Class 3 Without Waivers/Limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: 03/06/2014
Occupational Pilot: No
Last Flight Review or Equivalent: 06/10/2016
Flight Time:  (Estimated) 530 hours (Total, all aircraft), 240 hours (Total, this make and model), 530 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft), 12 hours (Last 90 days, all aircraft), 4 hours (Last 30 days, all aircraft), 2 hours (Last 24 hours, all aircraft) 

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Manufacturer: PIPER
Registration: N8191B
Model/Series: PA 32R 301T
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 1980
Amateur Built: No
Airworthiness Certificate: Normal
Serial Number: 32R-8029084
Landing Gear Type: Retractable - Tricycle
Seats: 6
Date/Type of Last Inspection: 05/11/2017, Annual
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 3600 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection:
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 2812.51 Hours as of last inspection
Engine Manufacturer: Lycoming
ELT: Installed, not activated
Engine Model/Series: TIO540S1AD
Registered Owner: On file
Rated Power: 300 hp
Operator: On file
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None 

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: Visual Conditions
Condition of Light: Night
Observation Facility, Elevation: KMDD, 2803 ft msl
Observation Time: 0215 UTC
Distance from Accident Site: 0 Nautical Miles
Direction from Accident Site: 140°
Lowest Cloud Condition:
Temperature/Dew Point: 16°C / -4°C
Lowest Ceiling:
Visibility: 10 Miles
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: 11 knots, 160°
Visibility (RVR):
Altimeter Setting: 29.98 inches Hg
Visibility (RVV):
Precipitation and Obscuration: No Obscuration; No Precipitation
Departure Point: GEORGETOWN, TX (GTU)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Destination: MIDLAND, TX (MDD)
Type of Clearance: None
Departure Time: 1830 CST
Type of Airspace: Class G

Airport Information

Runway Surface Type: Dirt; Grass/turf
Airport Elevation: 2805 ft
Runway Surface Condition: Dry
Runway Used: N/A
IFR Approach: None
Runway Length/Width:
VFR Approach/Landing: Forced Landing 

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Minor
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 1 Minor
Latitude, Longitude: 32.036667, -102.101667 (est)

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