Saturday, February 02, 2019

Fuel Exhaustion: Cessna 152, N6202M; accident occurred December 28, 2018 in Horseshoe Bay, Texas

The National Transportation Safety Board did not travel to the scene of this accident.

Additional Participating Entity:

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; San Antonio, Texas

Aviation Accident Factual Report - National Transportation Safety Board:

Investigation Docket - National Transportation Safety Board:

Location: Horseshoe Bay, TX
Accident Number: CEN19LA064
Date & Time: 12/28/2018, 2015 CST
Registration: N6202M
Aircraft: Cessna 152
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Fuel exhaustion
Injuries:2 Minor 
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal 

On December 28, 2018, about 2015 central standard time, a Cessna 152 airplane, N6202M, impacted terrain after a loss of engine power en route to Kelly Field Airport (KSKF), San Antonio, Texas. The pilot and one passenger received minor injuries, and the airplane was substantially damaged during a forced landing. The airplane was registered to and operated by Flyokair, LLC, under the provisions of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 as personal flight. Night visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the accident. The airplane departed Shawnee, Oklahoma, about 1655.

The pilot reported that he had been airborne about 2 hours, and that he should reach his destination airport in about 15 minutes. About 30-45 minutes later, he stated the engine started to lose power. He contacted air traffic control for vectors to the nearest airport. The pilot then looked at the gauges; oil pressure, oil temperature, and fuel gauges, which indicated the following: left fuel gauge ½ and right gauge less than ½. He added that he might have to land on the highway, since he didn't think he could make an airport. In an attempt to restore engine power, the pilot applied carburetor heat, the engine responded, and he was able to climb and gain altitude. Since the engine responded after he applied carburetor heat, he thought the engine may have experienced carburetor icing. A few minutes later, the engine lost power, and additional attempts to restore power were unsuccessful. He established a glide and picked out terrain for the forced landing. The airplane then impacted trees and terrain.

The airplane recovery crew noted that the airplane was substantially damaged during the accident. The fuel tanks were empty and no evidence that fuel had leaked onto the ground. They added the fuel tanks had not been breached during the accident.

On the NTSB's 6120 form, Pilot/Operator Aircraft Accident/Incident Report, under the section: Recommendation (How could this accident/incident have been prevented?). The pilot noted (in part): Better calculation and review of distance, fuel in time, and time in flight.

During a follow-up conversation with a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) inspector, the pilot did not clarify how he checked the fuel tanks before departure; however, he didn't add fuel before departure. The pilot added that he had talked with the airplane's owner and admitted he ran of fuel. 

Pilot Information

Certificate: Commercial
Age: 32
Airplane Rating(s): Multi-engine Land; 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 With Waivers/Limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: 10/30/2017
Occupational Pilot: No
Last Flight Review or Equivalent: 11/21/2018
Flight Time: 383 hours (Total, all aircraft), 259 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft)

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Cessna
Registration: N6202M
Model/Series: 152 No Series
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 1980
Amateur Built: No
Airworthiness Certificate: Normal
Serial Number: 15284638
Landing Gear Type: Tricycle
Date/Type of Last Inspection: 09/01/2018, 100 Hour
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 1670 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection:
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 14182.4 Hours at time of accident
Engine Manufacturer: Lycoming
ELT: C91A installed
Engine Model/Series: O-235 SERIES
Registered Owner: On file
Rated Power: 110 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:KDZB 
Distance from Accident Site:
Observation Time: 0415 UTC
Direction from Accident Site:
Lowest Cloud Condition:
Visibility:  10 Miles
Lowest Ceiling: Overcast / 6000 ft agl
Visibility (RVR):
Wind Speed/Gusts: 4 knots /
Turbulence Type Forecast/Actual:
Wind Direction: 30°
Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual:
Altimeter Setting: 30.22 inches Hg
Temperature/Dew Point: 6°C / 0°C
Precipitation and Obscuration: No Obscuration; No Precipitation
Departure Point: Shawnee, OK (KSNL)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: VFR
Destination: San Antonio, TX (KSKF)
Type of Clearance: VFR Flight Following
Departure Time: 1655 CST
Type of Airspace:

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Minor
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: 1 Minor
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 2 Minor
Latitude, Longitude: 30.532778, -98.323611 (est)

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