|37000 Feet||Browse and search NASA's
Aviation Safety Reporting System
|Local Time Of Day||1801 To 2400|
|Locale Reference||airport : phx|
|Altitude||msl bound lower : 2100|
msl bound upper : 2100
|Controlling Facilities||tower : phx|
|Operator||general aviation : instructional|
|Make Model Name||Small Aircraft, High Wing, 1 Eng, Fixed Gear|
|Flight Phase||descent : approach|
|Function||flight crew : single pilot|
|Qualification||pilot : commercial|
pilot : instrument
|Experience||flight time last 90 days : 38|
flight time total : 600
flight time type : 600
|Affiliation||government : faa|
|Function||controller : local|
|Qualification||controller : non radar|
|Anomaly||aircraft equipment problem : critical|
non adherence : far
other anomaly other
other spatial deviation
|Independent Detector||other other : unspecified cockpit|
|Resolutory Action||flight crew : declared emergency|
|Primary Problem||Flight Crew Human Performance|
|Air Traffic Incident||Pilot Deviation|
The morning of mar/wed/92, I preflted small aircraft for a flight to bullhead city, az with a stop at lake havasu, az. The fuel in the left tank was at the tab, and the right tank was about an inch below the tab. The fuel gauges agreed with the visual inspection of the tanks. I calculated 35 gallons of fuel to be on board or a little more than 4 hours of flight time available. I calculated the trip would take 3 1/2 hours. When I was returning the phoenix sky harbor, the engine failed at 2100 MSL, about 1 mi north of the airport. I declared a mayday and landed on runway 8L. The tach time was 3.4 hours. The left fuel gauge read a little more than 1/4 full. The right fuel gauge read zero. The fuel gauges agreed with my calculations and I did not realize the engine failure was due to fuel starvation until after I landed and dipped the tanks. I feel that my calculation of the amount of fuel on board was wrong. This, coupled with an erroneous fuel gauge, caused me to run out of fuel. Lesson learned.
Original NASA ASRS Text
Title: SMA RUNS OUT OF FUEL ON NIGHT FLT. EMER LNDG AT ARPT.
Narrative: THE MORNING OF MAR/WED/92, I PREFLTED SMA FOR A FLT TO BULLHEAD CITY, AZ WITH A STOP AT LAKE HAVASU, AZ. THE FUEL IN THE L TANK WAS AT THE TAB, AND THE R TANK WAS ABOUT AN INCH BELOW THE TAB. THE FUEL GAUGES AGREED WITH THE VISUAL INSPECTION OF THE TANKS. I CALCULATED 35 GALLONS OF FUEL TO BE ON BOARD OR A LITTLE MORE THAN 4 HOURS OF FLT TIME AVAILABLE. I CALCULATED THE TRIP WOULD TAKE 3 1/2 HRS. WHEN I WAS RETURNING THE PHOENIX SKY HARBOR, THE ENG FAILED AT 2100 MSL, ABOUT 1 MI N OF THE ARPT. I DECLARED A MAYDAY AND LANDED ON RWY 8L. THE TACH TIME WAS 3.4 HRS. THE L FUEL GAUGE READ A LITTLE MORE THAN 1/4 FULL. THE R FUEL GAUGE READ ZERO. THE FUEL GAUGES AGREED WITH MY CALCULATIONS AND I DID NOT REALIZE THE ENG FAILURE WAS DUE TO FUEL STARVATION UNTIL AFTER I LANDED AND DIPPED THE TANKS. I FEEL THAT MY CALCULATION OF THE AMOUNT OF FUEL ON BOARD WAS WRONG. THIS, COUPLED WITH AN ERRONEOUS FUEL GAUGE, CAUSED ME TO RUN OUT OF FUEL. LESSON LEARNED.
Data retrieved from NASA's ASRS site as of July 2007 and automatically converted to unabbreviated mixed upper/lowercase text. This report is for informational purposes with no guarantee of accuracy. See NASA's ASRS site for official report.