Aviation safety investigations & reports

Piper PA38-112, VH-JAM, Archerfield QLD, 21 April 1988

Investigation number:
Status: Completed
Investigation completed


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During the preflight inspection, the pilot dipped the fuel tanks and noted that the left tank contained 25 litres and the right tank just on 30 litres. The airrcaft was taxied out to the run-up area using fuel from the left tank. Before the run-up, the pilot switched the fuel selector lever to the right tank and left it there for the take-off and remainder of the flight. The pilot decided to finish the flight with a touch and go landing followed by a final circuit. Following the normal application of full power for takeoff, the aircraft climbed to 100-250 feet above the ground when the engine surged and lost all power. The pilot chose a football field straight ahead and made a successful touchdown. Unfortunately, he was so engrossed with missing objects and steering the aircraft that he forgot to use the brakes effectively. The aircraft ran on and struck two goal posts and a tree before coming to rest against a security fence. The two occupants exited without injury. The engine had failed due to fuel starvation when all the useable fuel from the right tank had been consumed.

Download Final Report
[Download  PDF: 23KB]
General details
Date: 21 April 1988   Investigation status: Completed  
Time: 1329    
Location: Archerfield    
State: Queensland    
Release date: 17 August 1988   Occurrence category: Accident  
Report status: Final   Highest injury level: None  

Aircraft details

Aircraft details
Aircraft manufacturer Cessna Aircraft Company  
Aircraft model 206  
Aircraft registration VH-CJK  
Serial number 38-82A0078  
Type of operation Private  
Damage to aircraft Substantial  
Departure point Archerfield QLD  
Departure time 1232  
Destination Archerfield QLD