|37000 Feet||Browse and search NASA's
Aviation Safety Reporting System
|Local Time Of Day||1201 To 1800|
|Locale Reference||airport : zzz.airport|
|Altitude||msl single value : 1000|
|Controlling Facilities||tower : zzz.tower|
|Operator||general aviation : personal|
|Make Model Name||PA-28 Cherokee/Archer II/Dakota/Pillan/Warrior|
|Operating Under FAR Part||Part 91|
|Flight Phase||descent : approach|
|Route In Use||approach : traffic pattern|
|Function||flight crew : single pilot|
|Qualification||pilot : student|
|Experience||flight time last 90 days : 18|
flight time total : 127
flight time type : 118
|Anomaly||non adherence : published procedure|
other anomaly other
|Independent Detector||other flight crewa|
|Resolutory Action||flight crew : declared emergency|
flight crew : landed in emergency condition
|Problem Areas||Flight Crew Human Performance|
|Primary Problem||Flight Crew Human Performance|
The student pilot solo flight was planned for 2.50 hours of practice maneuvering and pattern work. Aircraft was preflted by me; and found to have more than 17 gals in the left wing tank (above the tab) and less than 17 gals in the right wing tank (below the tab). Due to the unequal load in the tanks I planned to run the tank with more than 2 hours fuel in it first; for 2 hours. Then I intended to run the lower tank while returning to the pattern for less than 1 hour. During maneuvering in the practice area I switched from the fuller tank to the lower tank at about 110 mins into the flight. I experienced some engine roughness which was not corrected by mixture changes; so I applied carburetor heat. I switched back to the original tank as a precaution. I returned to the airport for several touch and go lndgs and takeoffs. I was on left downwind for the active runway behind 2 other aircraft. As I reached midfield on the downwind leg; I felt a drop in engine power and heard a drop in engine RPM and also felt engine roughness. I recalled my failure to use the second fuel tank; suspected fuel exhaustion; and immediately turned toward the airfield; as I was well out over the water. As I turned I performed an emergency procedure check of all controls. The electric fuel pump was already turned on and mixture was full rich as I had set them for repeated pattern work. I moved the fuel selector to the right tank. I made a call to the tower saying as best I can recall: aircraft X request immediate landing engine trouble. The propeller was wind-milling but I did not have full power. I had established an approach to runway 29 by this time and made a call saying as best I can recall: aircraft X emergency landing. I continued inbound and established a stable approach; and landed within the first third of the runway. I taxied the aircraft back to the FBO under the aircraft's own power. Inspection revealed no fuel in the left wing tank.
Original NASA ASRS Text
Title: PA28 PILOT STUDENT RUNS LEFT TANK DRY IN TRAFFIC PATTERN AND MAKES EMERGENCY LANDING.
Narrative: THE STUDENT PLT SOLO FLT WAS PLANNED FOR 2.50 HRS OF PRACTICE MANEUVERING AND PATTERN WORK. ACFT WAS PREFLTED BY ME; AND FOUND TO HAVE MORE THAN 17 GALS IN THE L WING TANK (ABOVE THE TAB) AND LESS THAN 17 GALS IN THE R WING TANK (BELOW THE TAB). DUE TO THE UNEQUAL LOAD IN THE TANKS I PLANNED TO RUN THE TANK WITH MORE THAN 2 HRS FUEL IN IT FIRST; FOR 2 HRS. THEN I INTENDED TO RUN THE LOWER TANK WHILE RETURNING TO THE PATTERN FOR LESS THAN 1 HR. DURING MANEUVERING IN THE PRACTICE AREA I SWITCHED FROM THE FULLER TANK TO THE LOWER TANK AT ABOUT 110 MINS INTO THE FLT. I EXPERIENCED SOME ENG ROUGHNESS WHICH WAS NOT CORRECTED BY MIXTURE CHANGES; SO I APPLIED CARB HEAT. I SWITCHED BACK TO THE ORIGINAL TANK AS A PRECAUTION. I RETURNED TO THE ARPT FOR SEVERAL TOUCH AND GO LNDGS AND TKOFS. I WAS ON L DOWNWIND FOR THE ACTIVE RWY BEHIND 2 OTHER ACFT. AS I REACHED MIDFIELD ON THE DOWNWIND LEG; I FELT A DROP IN ENG PWR AND HEARD A DROP IN ENG RPM AND ALSO FELT ENG ROUGHNESS. I RECALLED MY FAILURE TO USE THE SECOND FUEL TANK; SUSPECTED FUEL EXHAUSTION; AND IMMEDIATELY TURNED TOWARD THE AIRFIELD; AS I WAS WELL OUT OVER THE WATER. AS I TURNED I PERFORMED AN EMER PROC CHK OF ALL CTLS. THE ELECTRIC FUEL PUMP WAS ALREADY TURNED ON AND MIXTURE WAS FULL RICH AS I HAD SET THEM FOR REPEATED PATTERN WORK. I MOVED THE FUEL SELECTOR TO THE R TANK. I MADE A CALL TO THE TWR SAYING AS BEST I CAN RECALL: ACFT X REQUEST IMMEDIATE LNDG ENG TROUBLE. THE PROP WAS WIND-MILLING BUT I DID NOT HAVE FULL PWR. I HAD ESTABLISHED AN APCH TO RWY 29 BY THIS TIME AND MADE A CALL SAYING AS BEST I CAN RECALL: ACFT X EMER LNDG. I CONTINUED INBOUND AND ESTABLISHED A STABLE APCH; AND LANDED WITHIN THE FIRST THIRD OF THE RWY. I TAXIED THE ACFT BACK TO THE FBO UNDER THE ACFT'S OWN PWR. INSPECTION REVEALED NO FUEL IN THE L WING TANK.
Data retrieved from NASA's ASRS site as of January 2009 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.