Learning Experiences

March 2001 Issue

Alas, No Gas

ĎThe fuel records were missing, so I had to rely solely on the fuel gaugesí

Undoubtedly the worst moment in my flying career so far was the day I ran out of fuel and wrote off a perfectly good airplane through my own stupidity. Iíll never forget it.

They say accidents result from a chain of small, seemingly insignificant events that eventually add up. In my case, the first link in the chain was an absence of paperwork. I was flying a light twin in which it was not possible to dip the tanks, so we had to rely on fuel consumption records, with the fuel gauges as backups.

On that particular day, the fuel records were missing, so I had to rely solely on the fuel gauges. This didnít worry me too much; Iíd been flying this plane for some time and knew the gauges w...

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