Reims Cessna F172N Skyhawk, G-DENR
The aircraft was on a VFR flight from Bournemouth, Dorset, to Truro, Cornwall. When it was approximately 15 nm south-west of Exmouth, Devon, and at a height of 2,800 ft amsl the engine began to run roughly before stopping. The pilot completed the Engine Failure checks without success and subsequently flew a forced landing into a field. The aircraft landed heavily and suffered severe damage. Upon coming to a stop the pilot made the aircraft safe and the occupants vacated the aircraft uninjured. When the temperature and dew point are plotted on the Carburettor Icing chart they fall in the Moderate Icing – cruise power area close to the 80% humidity line. As the aircraft was close to the cloud base at the time the relative humidity is likely to have been closer to 100% increasing the risk of carburetor icing. The pilot thought that one possibility could be that he misidentified the fuel selector position and turned it from BOTH to OFF. It is thus possible that the engine failure could be attributed to a switching error; however, it could also be attributed to carburettor icing. The possibility that some other unidentified problem caused the engine failure cannot be excluded.
Reims Cessna F172N Skyhawk, G-DENR 02-07.pdf (824.10 kb)
Date of occurrence: 20 August 2006