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N50ML accident description

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Crash location 38.805000°N, 91.174167°W
Nearest city Warrenton, MO
38.811436°N, 91.141537°W
1.8 miles away
Tail number N50ML
Accident date 21 Apr 2007
Aircraft type Diamond Aircraft Industries DA 20-A1
Additional details: None

NTSB Factual Report

The airplane was substantially damaged during a forced landing following a loss of engine power during cruise flight. Examination of the airplane after the accident revealed no usable fuel remaining in the fuel tanks. A photograph of the fuel gauge that was taken after the accident showed the gauge indicating about 3/4 tank. During the subsequent examination, the fuel gauge showed about 1/4 tank. In a telephone conversation, the pilot stated that the airplane had been aloft for about 3 hours at the time the engine quit. He stated that he was familiar with this type airplane and knew that the airplane was capable of about 3 hours and 45 minutes of flight endurance. He stated that he was planning on stopping for fuel within the next 10 minutes of the accident time. He did not have a planned fuel stop and he was going to use his global positioning system receiver to select a suitable airport for fuel. The pilot selected a gravel road for the forced landing but landed short in a field. A fuel receipt indicated that the airplane had been fueled at the departure airport with 21.5 gallons of fuel at 0941 eastern daylight time on the day of the accident. The type certificate data sheet lists the airplane's fuel capacity as 20.9 gallons with 20.3 gallons usable fuel. The accident time was reported as 1515 central daylight time.

NTSB Probable Cause

The pilot's inadequate pre-flight planning which resulted in exhaustion of the fuel supply and the unsuitable terrain encountered for the forced landing. A factor in the accident was inaccurate fuel quantity indication.

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