The pilot reported that while flying at a high-density altitude, “it never occurred to me to monitor fuel consumption for the 80-mile flight.” The engine sputtered and the pilot made an emergency landing in a field near Ledgedale, Pennsylvania.
After he landed, he secured fuel for the aircraft and attempted to takeoff. During the takeoff roll, the airplane encountered a “rut” in the surface, and he aborted the takeoff. He attempted another takeoff in an area that provided more useable space to perform the takeoff roll, but the plane climbed about 2 feet and the landing gear entered the tall grass and the airplane abruptly nosed over.
The airplane sustained substantial damage to both wings, the fuselage, and the empennage. The pilot sustained minor injuries.
The pilot reported that there were no mechanical malfunctions or failures with the airplane that would have precluded normal operation.
Probable Cause: The pilot’s selection of unsuitable terrain for takeoff, which resulted a nose-over. Contributing to the accident was the pilot’s improper in-flight fuel management, which resulted in the precautionary landing on unsuitable terrain.
This June 2019 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.