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The pilot was engaged in sheep mustering. The aircraft was being flown at 200 feet agl, and about three minutes after the fuel tank selection was changed , the engine lost power. The pilot selected the other fuel tank but the engine did not respond. The aircraft touched down heavily on unsuitable terrain and the main gear collapsed. No defect was found with the engine and 55 litres of fuel was drained from the fuel system following the accident. It is considered probable that the loss of power resulted from fuel starvation caused by the pilot inadvertently turning the fuel selector beyond the correct position. An inspection of the fuel selector valve found that it had been incorrectly assembled. This resulted in there being no effective detent to indicate that the selector had been correctly positioned. Also it was found that if the selector was positioned slightly beyond the required position, fuel flow was considerably restricted.

Download Final Report
[ Download PDF: 22KB]
General details
Date: 02 December 1985 Investigation status: Completed 
Time: 515  
Location:Boolardy Homestead 150km WSW of Meekatharra Investigation type: Occurrence Investigation 
State: Western Australia  
Release date: 28 April 1986  
Report status: Final Occurrence category: Accident 
 Highest injury level: None 
Aircraft details
Aircraft manufacturer: Piper Aircraft Corp 
Aircraft model: PA-18 
Aircraft registration: VH-CPI 
Type of operation: Private 
Damage to aircraft: Substantial 
Departure point:Boolardy Homestead WA
Departure time:0515
Destination:Boolardy Homestead WA
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