Feb. 27, Lamar, Colo. / Piper PA-23-250 Aztec


At approximately 12:10 MST, a Piper Aztec was substantially damaged during a forced landing near Lamar, but neither occupant was injured. The pilot had just purchased the airplane and had departed Fort Worth, Texas, approximately 2 hours 50 minutes prior to the accident. The pilot said he had used all the fuel in the auxiliary tanks and had switched back to the mains. Approximately 20 minutes later, the left engine lost power. After several attempted restarts, the other engine lost power. He landed the airplane in an alfalfa field. During landing rollout, he pulled the airplane back into the air to hop an irrigation ditch. The field on the other side was freshly plowed and the nose wheel landing gear separated from the airplane when it contacted the soft earth. Postaccident examination of the main fuel tanks revealed that approximately 8 gallons had been used from each.


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