Cessna runs out of gas

Aircraft: Cessna 182. Injuries: None. Location: Humnoke, Arkansas. Aircraft damage: Substantial.

What reportedly happened: The pilot and two passengers were en route to their destination when the airplane’s engine surged.

The pilot applied carburetor heat and engine power was restored temporarily, then surged and quit completely. The pilot performed a forced landing to a highway during which the nose landing gear and left main landing gear collapsed.

An examination of the airplane and engine by an FAA inspector revealed approximately one gallon of fuel present in the wings. In addition, only a small amount of fuel was found in the gascolator and carburetor.

Probable cause: The pilot’s improper fuel management, which resulted in a loss of engine power due to fuel exhaustion.

NTSB Identification: CEN11CA255

This March 2011 accident report is provided by the National Transportation Safety Board. Published as an educational tool, it is intended to help pilots learn from the misfortunes of others.


  1. Jerry Johnson says

    Since the article is printed in the name of safety, it would be much more valuable if it detailed 182 fuel tank capacities, and usable fuel. There is much confusion between models.

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