Quick Preflight & Water In Fuel – Possible Causes Of The November 13th Accident in Jackson, Mississippi
- The NTSB says that clear water was found in fuel of a plane that crashed November 13, killing three people all flying to an air safety meeting in Raymond. The single-engine Piper PA-32 crashed into a home in west Jackson just after taking off from Hawkins Field. Killed were flight instructor and two fellow pilots. The plane’s owner had planned to go on the flight but instead went deer hunting.
The preliminary report says that clear water was found in the fuel system and the National Transportation Safety Board is trying to determine where that water came from. Water in fuel could make the engine sputter, as reported by witnesses, and could have contributed to the crash.
The preliminary report indicates little else was wrong with plane and witnesses say the preflight inspection was very quick. The three were late for the meeting when they took off about 5:12 p.m. There was a small puddle of fuel under the fuel strainer and a tire was low, but they decided to take off anyway.
Less than two minutes after takeoff, the pilot radioed: “We got an engine problem. We’re turning back toward Hawkins, (…) we’re headed back, we’ll try to make It.” - the report says. The plane crashed, ending upside down less than a mile from the runway.