Engine Had A Low Manifold Pressure Reading And Then The Engine Sustained A Total Loss Of Power

Location: Lakeway, TX Accident Number: CEN23LA107
Date & Time: February 12, 2023, 09:58 Local Registration: N304MA
Aircraft: Mooney Aircraft Corp. M20 Injuries: 1 None

Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General aviation – Personal

On February 12, 2023, about 0958 central standard time, a Mooney Aircraft Corporation M20K Encore airplane, N304MA, sustained substantial damage when it was involved in an accident near Lakeway, Texas. The pilot sustained no injury. The airplane was operated as a Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 personal flight.

The pilot reported that he had recently purchased the airplane and he was relocating the airplane to his home base at the Outlaw Field Airport (CKV), Clarksville, Tennessee. During the preflight inspection, the pilot did not observe any anomalies. He reported that the airplane had 57 gallons of fuel onboard at takeoff and the engine oil was at a sufficient level for flight operations.

A preliminary review of Automatic Dependent Surveillance–Broadcast (ADS-B) data showed that the airplane departed from the Kestrel Airpark (1T7), Spring Branch, Texas, and traveled to the northeast. The pilot reported that while in flight, the engine had a low manifold pressure reading and then the engine sustained a total loss of power. The ADS-B data showed that the airplane performed a 180° turn as it approached the Colorado River just to the north of Bee Cave, Texas. The pilot then maneuvered the airplane north toward the Lakeway Airpark (3R9), Lakeway, Texas.

The pilot performed a forced landing to a golf course just to the north of 3R9. During the forced landing sequence, the airplane impacted trees and a wood fence, and came to rest near commercial electrical power equipment. The airplane came to rest upright on the main landing gear, and the pilot was able to egress from the airplane without further incident. The airplane sustained substantial damage to the fuselage and to both wings.

The Federal Aviation Administration responded to the accident site to perform documentation work. A large amount of engine oil was observed trailing rearwards on the underside of the fuselage. The engine oil level was checked after the accident and oil was not observed on the dipstick. The airplane was equipped with a Continental Motors TSIO-360 reciprocating engine and a Hartzell metal 3-blade constant speed propeller.

The wreckage was recovered from the accident site for future examination work.

FMI: www.ntsb.gov