Accident Brief, Occurrence # 14/908

Occurrence No 14/908 Nature of Flight PRIVATE OTHER
Aircraft Model Rans S-7 Courier Pilot License Recreational Pilot Licence (Aeroplane) Commercial Pilot Licence (Aeroplane)
Date and Time 05 Mar 14 at 15:00 Pilot Age 73
Location Waipahi Flying Hours (Total) 0
POB 1 Flying Hours (on Type) 0
Injuries (Fatal) 0 Last 90 Days 0
Injuries (Serious) 0 TAIC Ref
Injuries (Minor) 1 Publishing Ref Vector Mar/Apr 2015
Damage Substantial Date Published


While in the cruise, the engine started losing power and running rough. The pilot carried out a forced landing, but during the approach to the selected field, the aircraft contacted trees resulting in a hard landing. The aircraft was damaged by contact with the trees and the left main gear collapsed on landing. The pilot received minor injuries. Maintenance investigation found a significant amount of water in the fuel lines prior to the fuel filter. It is suspected that the fuel filter had prevented the water from reaching the carburettors but had also restricted the fuel flow due to the presence of the water. It could not be determined how the water had entered the fuel system, but it is possible that this may have occurred over a period of time due to condensation. In Safety Alert 168 RANS states: 'We recommend the gascolator option for both fuel filtering and separation of water from the fuel. Some models feature this standard and more will in the future'. This aircraft was not fitted with a fuel gascolator which may have alerted the pilot to the presence of water during the pre-flight.