These October 2009 accident reports are provided by the National Transportation Safety Board. Published as an educational tool, they are intended to help pilots learn from the misfortunes of others.
Aircraft: Cessna P210. Injuries: 1 Minor. Location: Rifle, Colo. Aircraft damage: Substantial.
What reportedly happened: The commercial pilot, who held an instrument rating, had logged 1,423 hours, including 169 hours in type, of which 36 hours were in the proceeding 90 days. According to the pilot, following the initial climb he pulled back the power lever but the engine remained at full power.
He attempted to cycle the power lever and only experienced a change in power output when the control was at the flight idle position and at the full-power position. The pilot opted to return for an emergency landing.
While preparing to land, he cycled the power between flight idle and full power in an effort to maintain airspeed and attain the proper glide path. During final approach, he attempted to increase power again but the engine did not respond and remained at idle. The airplane landed short of the approach end of the runway and flipped onto its back.
The investigative team and an independent CFI duplicated the engine power anomalies described by the pilot by manipulating the propeller condition lever in place of the power lever, which is likely what the pilot did prior to the accident.
Probable cause: The pilot’s failure to properly identify the power lever and, instead, manipulating the propeller condition lever.
For more information: NTSB.gov NTSB Identification: CEN10FA021