Accident Just Highlander N101KL,
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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 344715
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Date:Tuesday 24 August 2021
Time:18:26 LT
Type:Just Highlander
Owner/operator:Warbler Creek Holdings LLC
Registration: N101KL
MSN: JA536-11-18
Year of manufacture:2019
Total airframe hrs:168 hours
Engine model:Rotax 912 ULS
Fatalities:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 2
Aircraft damage: Substantial
Location:Crittenden, Kentucky -   United States of America
Phase: Approach
Departure airport:Falmouth, KY (K62)
Destination airport:Crittenden, KY
Investigating agency: NTSB
Confidence Rating: Accident investigation report completed and information captured
The personal flight was approaching a private turf runway for landing. After the airplane completed a continuous 260° left-turning approach toward the runway, the pilot decided that he wanted to land to the south rather than to the north and applied engine power. However, the engine lost total power, and the pilot landed the airplane 'abruptly” before it impacted a building. The airplane sustained substantial damage to the right wing and empennage.
The pilot reported that the left-wing fuel tank was leaking after the accident. The pilot also reported that, at the time of the accident, the airplane had flown a total of about 4 hours since it was last refueled to capacity (26 gallons total). The pilot stated that his planned fuel consumption rate was 5 gallons per hour. Postaccident examination of the airplane found that the left-wing tank contained no fuel and that the right-wing tank contained about 1.5 to 2.0 gallons.
A test run of the engine revealed no mechanical malfunctions or anomalies that would have precluded normal operation. A field test was then performed in which the airplane was suspended from a sling, and the pitch and roll attitude captured by avionics data during the continuous left turn just before the accident was applied to the airplane. Water was added to each of the wing fuel tanks to determine the quantity needed to reach the fuel pickup (which unports fuel) on the inboard side of each tank. The test indicated that, when the airplane was in a descending left-turn attitude, fuel began to flow from the right tank at a quantity of about 3.5 gallons; however, about 6.5 gallons had to be added to the left tank before fuel flow was noted.
The total amount of fuel onboard the airplane at the time of the accident and its distribution could not be determined based on the available evidence for this accident investigation. However, given the pilot's estimated fuel consumption rate and the time since refueling, the airplane likely consumed about 20 gallons of fuel, leaving about 6 gallons divided between the two wing tanks. Postaccident testing showed that it is likely that this amount of fuel could have caused fuel unporting from the tank pickups during the extended left turn, resulting in fuel starvation and a total loss of engine power.

Probable Cause: The pilot's inadequate fuel planning, which resulted in fuel starvation and a total loss of engine power.

Accident investigation:
Investigating agency: NTSB
Report number: ERA21LA338
Status: Investigation completed
Duration: 1 year and 11 months
Download report: Final report




Revision history:

19-Aug-2023 16:32 ASN Update Bot Added
19-Aug-2023 16:36 harro Updated

Corrections or additions? ... Edit this accident description

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