No Fuel Found In Aircraft At Impact Site
OK... we're not sure what to make of this... since the lack of a
pilot certificate or medical certificate is not an indicator of the
requisite skill level of any potential aviator... but there is
little doubt that the "pilot" had little or no fuel when he was
forced to deadstick... experiencing serious injuries in the
process. This guy definitely has some explaining to do...
NTSB Identification: ERA12LA112
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Friday, December 16, 2011 in Merry Hill, NC
Aircraft: PIPER PA-38-112, registration: N9279T
Injuries: 1 Serious.
This is preliminary information, subject to change, and may contain
On December 16, 2011, about 1330 eastern standard time, a Piper
PA-38-112, N9279T, crashed during a forced landing following a loss
of engine power near Merry Hill, North Carolina. The airplane
received substantial damage and the non-certificated pilot/owner
was seriously injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed,
and no flight plan was filed for the personal flight that
originated at Plymouth Municipal Airport (PMZ), Plymouth, North
Carolina, exact time unknown. The flight was destined for the
pilot/owner's private strip and was conducted under the provisions
of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91.
According to witness statements provide to the North Carolina
State Highway Patrol, the airplane was maneuvering at a tree top
height towards an open field, when the engine stopped producing
power. The airplane then descended at a steep angle at the approach
end of the field before it collided with terrain, nosed over and
came to rest inverted.
Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) aviation safety inspectors
examined the airplane at the accident site on the day after the
accident. Control continuity was established from the cockpit to
all flight control surfaces, and there was no evidence of a
preimpact mechanical anomaly. The left fuel tank was selected on
the fuel selector, and no fuel was found in the left tank. There
was no odor of fuel, and no fuel staining present around the
The right fuel tank was also empty, but there was some fuel
blighting of the vegetation beneath the right fuel cap.
The pilot/owner held no pilot certificate. His most recent
application for an FAA medical certificate was dated January 22,
1997, but a medical certificate was never issued. The pilot could
not be interviewed due to his injuries.
According to FAA records, the airplane was manufactured in 1978,
and registered to the pilot on January 21, 1997, the day prior to
his medical application. It was a two-seat, low-wing, fixed gear
airplane that was equipped with a Lycoming O-235, 115-horsepower
engine. The airplane's tachometer showed 3,847 aircraft hours after