The Aventura 2 pilot was conducting touch-and-go landings on a river in Rockledge, Florida.
About 300 feet above ground level, the engine began to misfire and subsequently failed.
He did not have sufficient altitude to switch fuel pumps and attempt an engine restart, so he chose to conduct a forced landing.
During the landing flare, the airplane lost lift, landed hard on the water, and nosed over, resulting in two minor injuries.
An examination of the engine found that a ground wire lug on the No. 1 fuel pump was loose, which caused the ground wire to have intermittent contact with the lead and likely caused the fuel pump to malfunction and the engine to subsequently lose power.
The most recent conditional inspection was completed about 10 months before the accident.
The pilot, who was a certificated experimental aircraft repairman and conducted maintenance on the airplane, stated that he “must have missed this item on his last inspection.”
The NTSB determined the probable cause as the pilot’s failure to maintain airspeed during a forced landing following a loss of engine power, which resulted in a hard landing. Contributing to the accident was the pilot’s inadequate inspection of the engine, which resulted in a loose ground wire lug on a fuel pump and the subsequent loss of engine power.
NTSB Identification: ERA14LA309
This June 2014 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.