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FAA notes modified fuel system in 2016 AT-6 accidentFAA notes modified fuel system in 2016 AT-6 accident

The FAA is recommending that operators of some Boeing (North American) AT-6 and T-6 single-engine airplanes verify their aircraft are equipped with appropriate fuel system placards and mechanical provisions, citing the 2016 fatal crash of an AT-6 with a modified fuel system.

Photo by Chris Rose.

Owners should verify that the placards and mechanical provisions are capable of functioning as designed “to prevent inadvertently selecting the fuel selector position that would unknowingly shut off fuel flow,” the FAA said in a special airworthiness information bulletin issued Feb. 9.

The aircraft involved in the crash, which occurred shortly after departure from Falcon Field in Mesa, Arizona, had its fuel selector lever pointer “positioned in an unmarked painted white area on the placard, which shut off fuel,” the bulletin says, noting other mechanical and marking discrepancies that likely made the accident—in which the pilot and passenger died—“an isolated event.”

“The fuel selector was not approved for installation, and there is not a known similar fleet population of aircraft with this unapproved part installed,” the FAA noted.

The bulletin lists the appropriate parts and illustrates appropriate placards for the various T-6 and AT-6 models affected.

Dan Namowitz

Dan Namowitz

Associate Editor Web
Associate Editor Web Dan Namowitz has been writing for AOPA in a variety of capacities since 1991. He has been a flight instructor since 1990 and is a 30-year AOPA member.
Topics: Warbird, Accident, Fuel Awareness

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