Aircraft Accident/Incident Report

Anchorage, Alaska 99902
Monday, May 24, 1999 6:45 AKD

NTSB Narrative Summary Released at Completion of Accident

A commercial pilot departed a private lake in a float equipped airplane for a flight over a 12 mile wide area of water. He intended to pick up two friends staying at a cabin, whom he dropped off the day before. The airplane did not arrive at the lake, and was reported overdue. Six days later, the body of the pilot was found along the shore of the area of water the pilot intended to cross. He was wearing a flotation cushion that was carried in the airplane. The cause of death was hypothermia, and drowning. The airplane has not been found. For several months before the accident, the airplane had a recurring engine roughness, backfiring, and several engine fires during start-up. During an annual inspection, one month before the accident, a mechanic installed a six point engine primer system. During flights within two days of the accident, passengers who flew in the airplane, commented that the engine would backfire when the throttle was reduced. One day before the accident, prior to flying the two friends to the cabin, the pilot purchased 20 gallons of automotive fuel, and poured it into the right wing fuel tank. During taxi for departure, the engine quit, and the pilot had difficulty restarting the engine. Automotive fuel is not recommended, or approved, for the engine.

NTSB Probable Cause Narrative


Event Information

Type of Event Accident
Event Date 5/24/1999
Event Day of the Week Monday
Time of Event 645
Event Time Zone --
Event State ALASKA
Event Country --
Zipcode of the event site 99902
Event Date Year 1999
Event Date Month 5
MidAir Collision Indicator No
On Ground Collision occurred ? No
Event Location Latitude
Event Location Longitude
Event Location Airport
Event Location Nearest Airport ID
Indicates whether the acc/inc occurred off or on an airport Off Airport/Airstrip
Distance from airport in statute miles --
Degrees magnetic from airport --
Airport Elevation --
Weather Briefing Completeness Unknown
Investigator's weather source Weather Observation Facility
Time of the weather observation 653 Atlantic Daylight Time
Direction of event from weather observation facility (degrees) 45
Weather Observation Facility ID PAN
Elevation of weather observation facility 144
Distance of event from weather observation facility (units?) 8
Time Zone of the weather observation ADT
Lighting Conditions Day
Lowest Ceiling Height 8000
Lowest Non-Ceiling Height 3500
Sky/Lowest/Cloud Conditions Scattered
Sky Condition for Lowest Ceiling Broken
Visibility Runway Visual Range (Feet) 0
Visibility Runway Visual Value (Statute Miles) 0
Visibility (Statute Miles) 10
Air Temperature at event time (in degrees celsius) 9
Dew Point at event time (in degress fahrenheit) 2
Wind Direction (degrees magnetic) 136
Variable Wind Indicator Wind direction could be determined
Wind Speed (knots) 11
Wind Velocity Indicator --
Wind Gust Indicator Not Gusting
Wind Gust (knots) --
Altimeter Setting at event time (in. Hg) 29
Density Altitude (feet) --
Intensity of Precipitation --
METAR weather report --
Event Highest Injury Fatal
On Ground, Fatal Injuries 0
On Ground, Minor Injuries 0
On Ground, Serious Injuries 0
Injury Total Fatal 1
Injury Total Minor --
Injury Total None --
Injury Total Serious --
Injury Total All 1
Investigating Agency NTSB
NTSB Docket Number (internal use) 675
NTSB Notification Source --
NTSB Notification Date May 30 1999 12:00AM
NTSB Notification Time 1730
Fiche Number and/or location -used to find docket information IMAGE
Date of most recent change to record May 28 2002 3:16PM
User who most recently changed record NTSB\JOHB
Basic weather conditions Visual Meteorological Cond
FAA District Office --

Aircraft Involved

Aircraft #1

Aircraft Registration Number N793C
NTSB Number ANC99LA065
Missing Aircraft Indicator N
Federal Aviation Reg. Part Part 91: General Aviation
Type of Flight Plan filed None
Flight plan Was Activated? --
Damage Destroyed
Aircraft Fire --
Aircraft Explosion --
Aircraft Manufacturer's Full Name Stinson
Aircraft Model 108
Aircraft Series Identifier 108
Aircraft Serial Number 3793
Certified Max Gross Weight 2500
Aircraft Category Airplane
Aircraft Registration Class U.S. Registered/U.S. Soil
Aircraft is a homebuilt? No
Flight Crew Seats --
Cabin Crew Seats --
Passenger Seats --
Total number of seats on the aircraft 4
Number of Engines 1
Fixed gear or retractable gear Fixed
Aircraft, Type of Last Inspection Annual
Date of Last Inspection May 5 1999 12:00AM
Airframe hours since last inspection --
Airframe Hours 1480
ELT Installed Yes
ELT Activated No
ELT Aided Location of Event Site Unknown
ELT Type --
Aircraft Owner Street Address P.O. BOX 230867
Aircraft Owner City ANCHORAGE
Aircraft Owner State AK
Aircraft Owner Country
Aircraft Owner Zipcode 99523
Operator is an individual? --
Operator Name GLENN A. FERRIS
Operator Same as Owner? No
Operator Is Doing Business As --
Operator Address Same as Owner? No
Operator Street Address 2909 W. 100TH AVE.
Operator City ANCHORAGE
Operator State AK
Operator Country
Operator Zip code 99515
Operator Code
Owner has at least one certificate None
Other Operator of large aircraft? No
Certified for Part 133 or 137 Operation Unknown
Operator Certificate Number --
Indicates whether an air carrier operation was scheduled or not --
Indicates Domestic or International Flight --
Operator carrying Pax/Cargo/Mail --
Type of Flying (Per_Bus / Primary) Personal
Second Pilot on Board No
Departure Point Same as Event Yes
Departure Airport Code
Departure City
Departure State AK
Departure Country
Departure Time 630
Departure Time Zone ADT
Destination Same as Local Flt dest & departure same, accident can occur anywhere
Destination Airport Code
Destination City
Destination State
Destination Country
Specific Phase of Flight Unknown
Report sent to ICAO? --
Evacuation occurred --
Date of most recent change to record May 28 2002 3:16PM
User who most recently changed record JOHB
Since inspection or accident --
Event Location Runway Number and Location 0
Runway Length --
Runway Width --
Sight Seeing flight No
Air Medical Flight No
Medical Flight --