This September 2007 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.
Aircraft: Cessna T210N.
Location: San Jose, Calif.
Injuries: 2 Minor.
Aircraft damage: Substantial.
What reportedly happened: According to the pilot, the flight was uneventful until he was about 10 minutes away from the airport and the engine lost power. He attempted to fix the problem by switching from the left to right fuel tank, believing the right tank had at least 10 gallons of fuel in it. When the engine did not respond, he made a forced landing in a parking lot.
Investigators determined the plane had run out of fuel.
Probable cause: The pilot’s mismanagement of the fuel supply, resulting in fuel starvation.
For more information: NTSB.gov