Preliminary Accident Reports

July 2001 Issue

April 20, Winchester, Va. / Piper Warrior

At about 23:23 eastern time, a Piper PA-28-161 lost engine power on approach to Winchester Regional Airport and was damaged in the ensuing forced landing. The pilot was not injured. The pilot estimated the airplane had a full-tanks endurance of 4.5 hours, but after three hours aloft the left fuel gauge read E and the right fuel gauge indicated . He attempted to land in Martinsburg, W.Va., but could not activate the pilot-controlled lighting, so he continued to his destination. The engine failed while on a 1-mile final for runway 14. The pilot switched tanks and the engine revved briefly, then died. The left fuel tank contained about 1 pints of fuel. The right tank was compromised in the...

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