May 5, Lake Erie, Ohio / Piper PA-28-181 Warrior


At about 13:36 EDT, the pilot of a Piper Warrior ditched into Lake Erie at the end of a 3:51 cross-country flight. The pilot received minor injuries. The pilot had taken off from Green Bay, Wisc., where the engine starter had been repaired, to reposition the airplane to Burke Lakefront Airport in Cleveland. The flight was uneventful until about 10 miles north of his destination, when he reported to the BKL air traffic control tower that the engine was cutting in and out. Two minutes later he declared an emergency, saying the engine had lost power. After ditching, the airplane remained afloat for several minutes and then sank. The pilot was rescued by the U.S. Coast Guard. The pilot reported that the fuel gauges showed 5 gallons on each side when the power loss occurred.


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