The pilot reported that, after the Van’s RV-6A took off from the airport in Green Valley, Arizona, and reached an altitude of about 300 feet above ground level, the engine lost power. He then initiated a right turn toward the airport.
Subsequently, the plane hit terrain and trees adjacent to the runway and nosed over.
Post-accident examination of the airplane revealed that the right fuel pump power wire was disconnected at its terminal and that the left fuel pump power wire was partially disconnected from its terminal, which would result in no positive fuel pressure being supplied to the engine. The engine was not equipped with an engine-driven fuel pump.
The examination also revealed that the crimp on the terminal connector for the right fuel pump power wire was likely incorrect, which allowed the wire to disconnect from its terminal. However, it could not be determined how the left fuel pump power wire became partially disconnected from its terminal.
No additional anomalies were found during the examination of the airframe and engine that would have precluded normal operation.
Based on the evidence, it is likely that the disconnection of both fuel pump power wires led to a loss of fuel pressure to the engine and the subsequent loss of engine power.
Probable cause: The total loss of engine power during initial climb due to the disconnection of both fuel pump power wires.
NTSB Identification: WPR15LA130
This March 2015 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.