Robert E. Burgin, 41, an airplane accident investigator with the National Transportation Safety Board since 1970, died Thursday in Shore Memorial Hospital in Sommers Point, N.J., as a result of injuries he received in an auto accident Sept. 2.

Mr. Burgin was a passenger in a car that was southbound on New Road in Northfield, N.J., when it was struck by an oncoming car that crossed the median, according to the Northfield, N.J., police department.

Mr. Burgin was a member of the First Baptist Church of Crofton and was a Boy Scout leader. He was a major in the D.C. Air National Guard.

He was a native of Millport, Ala., and a graduate of the University of Southern California at Fullerton. He earned a master's degree in business administration at American University in 1976.

Mr. Burgin was a pilot in the Air Force for five years during the 1960s. He was a civilian engineering psychologist with the Air Force Flight Dynamics Laboratory in Dayton, Ohio, before coming to Washington.

He is survived by his wife, Joan, two sons, Scott and Mark, and a daughter, Deborah, all of the home in Crofton; three brothers, James and Samuel, both of Riverside, Calif., and Fred Lewis of Las Vegas, and a sister, Jean Hughes of Palo Verde, Calif.