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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 168093
Last updated: 22 February 2021
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Type:Silhouette image of generic P28A model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Piper PA-28-181 Archer II
Registration: N8826C
C/n / msn: 28-7690168
Fatalities:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 2
Other fatalities:2
Aircraft damage: Substantial
Location:shoreline, Venice, Florida -   United States of America
Phase: Approach
Departure airport:Englewood, FL (X36)
Destination airport:Venice, FL (VNC)
Investigating agency: NTSB
The private pilot was conducting a short flight from one airport to another airport to obtain fuel for the airplane. The pilot reported that the airplane had been kept in a hangar and had not been flown in the preceding 3 1/2 months. The pilot performed a preflight inspection of the airplane and noted the fuel quantity but he did not sump the fuel tanks. He subsequently performed an engine run-up and departed without incident. He climbed the airplane to about 1,000 ft and, after some maneuvering, eventually flew over the water and paralleled a shoreline toward another airport. The pilot reported that the engine then began to run roughly and that he heard a “missing, knocking, hitting sound” but that neither he nor the pilot-rated passenger noted a decrease in engine rpm. Although the pilot rotated the ignition switch through the various positions and changed fuel tanks, the engine lost power and the propeller began wind-milling.
The pilot declared an emergency and angled the descending airplane toward the shoreline. He was concerned that, if he landed in deeper water, the fixed-landing-gear airplane would flip over. The pilot saw a group of people along the beach and attempted to navigate around them. He then aimed for a spot where he thought there were no people, and the airplane touched down in the water near the shoreline and then came to rest on the sand near the water’s edge. The pilot exited the airplane and learned that he had struck two people in the water.
Postaccident examination of the airframe and engine, which included a successful engine test run using fuel from the airplane’s fuel system, did not reveal any evidence of water contamination or mechanical malfunctions or failures that would have precluded normal operation. Given this evidence, the loss of engine power was likely a transient condition. Although the condition could have resulted from pilot action, neither the pilot nor the passenger indicated that the pilot took any action that would have resulted in the loss of engine power. Although the airplane was operating in conditions that were conducive to the formation of carburetor ice without the carburetor heat on, the fixed-pitch propeller/engine combination did not gradually lose rpm, which would have occurred if carburetor ice had developed. Therefore, the reason for the loss of engine power could not be determined.
The National Transportation Safety Board asked the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to provide information on any policy that addressed protecting people on the ground during a loss of engine power. The FAA responded, in part, “Because of the variety of possible emergency situations, it is impractical to apply a specific policy addressing risks involved between beach landings and ditching. The FAA relies on its requirements for pilot training on aeronautical decision making to compel pilots to pursue courses of action in an emergency which appear to be the safest and most appropriate under the circumstances.” Once the engine failed, the pilot chose to land on a shoreline area that he incorrectly believed was unoccupied.

Probable Cause: A total loss of engine power for reasons that could not be determined because postaccident examination of the engine revealed no mechanical malfunctions or failures that would have precluded normal operation. Contributing to the accident was the pilot’s failure to identify occupants on the ground near the shoreline in the airplane’s forced landing path.


FAA register:

Revision history:

27-Jul-2014 23:12 Geno Added
29-Jul-2014 15:06 gerard57 Updated [Other fatalities, Narrative]
01-Aug-2014 17:39 Anon. Updated [Narrative]
24-Aug-2014 17:06 Aerossurance Updated [Location, Destination airport, Source, Narrative]
21-Dec-2016 19:28 ASN Update Bot Updated [Time, Damage, Category, Investigating agency]
02-May-2017 16:15 PiperOnslaught Updated [Departure airport, Destination airport, Source, Narrative]
19-Aug-2017 14:55 ASN Update Bot Updated [Operator, Nature, Departure airport, Destination airport, Source, Narrative]

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