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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 193656
Last updated: 18 June 2018
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Type:Silhouette image of generic T34P model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Beechcraft T-34A (A45) Mentor
Registration: N3434G
C/n / msn: 53-4106
Fatalities:Fatalities: 1 / Occupants: 1
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Substantial
Location:Climax, Decatur County, SE of Bainbridge, GA -   United States of America
Phase: Approach
Departure airport:Climax, GA (GE21)
Destination airport:Climax, GA (GE21)
Investigating agency: NTSB
The pilot was flying a local, personal flight from his personal airstrip after sundown. A witness who heard the airplane before the crash reported that the engine made a "sputtering" sound. The airplane collided with two tall trees and came to rest inverted on the approach end of the runway. The propeller did not exhibit indications of rotational damage. Although the right fuel tank was breached from impact and no fuel was found inside, the left tank contained 11 gallons of fuel.

An annual inspection was completed on the airframe and engine about 2.2 hours before the accident. An examination of the engine fuel lines found the throttle and metering unit outlet AN "B" nut was less than finger-tight. When the fuel manifold valve cap was opened, fuel leaked from the loose throttle and metering unit outlet AN "B" nut. Compressed air was passed through the throttle and metering unit inlet fuel line; bubbles and fuel could be seen coming out of the fuel outlet AN fitting. The condition of the fuel lines was an inspection item specifically noted as completed during the annual inspection. The throttle and metering unit outlet "B" nut most likely was not adequately secured during the inspection and backed off during the 2.2-hour previous flight and the 12-minute accident flight, which subsequently resulted in a total loss of engine power. The pilot was likely attempting to return to the runway, as the landing gear were extended and the flaps were up at the time of the accident. However, since the accident occurred concurrently with the end of civil twilight, it is possible that he did not see the trees on final approach due to the darkening conditions.

Probable Cause: The failure of maintenance personnel to ensure that the throttle and fuel metering unit AN "B" nut was secured, which resulted in a total loss of engine power in flight and a subsequent collision with trees while attempting to land after sunset.



FAA register:

Accident investigation:
Investigating agency: NTSB
Status: Investigation completed
Duration: 1 year and 2 months
Download report: Final report


Photo: NTSB

Revision history:

17-Feb-2017 06:10 Geno Added
17-Feb-2017 08:50 harro Updated [Aircraft type]
17-Feb-2017 17:04 Geno Updated [Aircraft type, Registration, Cn, Operator, Source]
17-Feb-2017 18:23 Aerossurance Updated [Location]
01-May-2018 13:44 ASN Update Bot Updated [Time, Cn, Operator, Nature, Departure airport, Destination airport, Source, Narrative]
01-May-2018 14:09 harro Updated [Phase, Source, Narrative, Photo, ]

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