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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 141880
Last updated: 30 January 2021
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Type:Silhouette image of generic AC50 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Aero Commander 500B
Owner/operator:Central Airlines Inc
Registration: N524HW
C/n / msn: 1533-191
Fatalities:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 1
Aircraft damage: Substantial
Location:About 1 mile south of Bartlesville Municipal Airport - KBVO, OK -   United States of America
Phase: En route
Departure airport:Kansas City, MO (KMKC)
Destination airport:Cushing, OK (KCUH)
Investigating agency: NTSB
The pilot was en route on a positioning flight when the airplane’s right engine surged and experienced a partial loss of power. He adjusted the power and fuel mixture controls; however, a few seconds later, the engine surged again. The pilot noted that the fuel flow gauge was below 90 pounds, so he turned the right fuel pump on. The pilot then felt a surge on the left engine, so he performed the same actions he as did for the right engine. He believed that he had some sort of fuel starvation problem. The pilot then turned to an alternate airport, at which time both engines lost total power. The airplane impacted trees and terrain about 1.5 miles from the airport. The left side fuel tank was breached during the accident; however, there was no indication of a fuel leak, and about a gallon of fuel was recovered from the airplane during the wreckage retrieval. The company’s route coordinator reported that prior to the accident flight, the pilot checked the fuel gauge and said the airplane had 120 gallons of fuel. A review of the airplane’s flight history revealed that, following the flight immediately before the accident flight, the airplane was left with approximately 50 gallons of fuel on board; there was no record of the airplane having been refueled after that flight. Another company pilot reported the airplane fuel gauge had a unique trait in that, after the airplane’s electrical power has been turned off, the gauge will rise 40 to 60 gallons before returning to zero. When the master switch was turned to the battery position during an examination of another airplane belonging to the operator, the fuel gauge indicated approximately 100 gallons of fuel; however, when the master switch was turned to the off position, the fuel quantity on the gauge rose to 120 gallons, before dropping off scale, past empty. Additionally, the fuel cap was removed and fuel could be seen in the tank, but there was no way to visually verify the quantity of fuel in the tank.
Probable Cause: The total loss of engine power due to fuel exhaustion and the pilot’s inadequate preflight inspection, which did not correctly identify the airplane’s fuel quantity before departure.



Revision history:

14-Jan-2012 01:51 gerard57 Added
14-Jan-2012 08:44 gerard57 Updated [Time, Aircraft type, Source, Narrative]
14-Jan-2012 11:15 Geno Updated [Location, Departure airport, Destination airport, Source, Narrative]
14-Jan-2012 13:18 harro Updated [Aircraft type]
14-Jan-2012 19:46 RobertMB Updated [Time, Operator, Source, Damage, Narrative]
15-Jan-2012 06:27 Penu Updated [Departure airport]
17-Jan-2012 10:22 Geno Updated [Aircraft type, Registration, Cn, Source]
17-Jan-2012 14:36 RobertMB Updated [Time, Aircraft type, Location, Nature, Source, Narrative]
17-Jan-2012 14:41 RobertMB Updated [Location, Narrative]
18-Jan-2012 04:01 RobertMB Updated [Source]
20-Jan-2012 17:15 Geno Updated [Nature, Source, Narrative]
21-Dec-2016 19:26 ASN Update Bot Updated [Time, Damage, Category, Investigating agency]
27-Nov-2017 17:52 ASN Update Bot Updated [Operator, Other fatalities, Departure airport, Destination airport, Source, Narrative]

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