Aviation Safety Letter 1/2003

Accident Shorts.

Note: All aviation accidents are investigated by the Transportation Safety Board of Canada (TSB). Each occurrence is assigned a level, from 1 to 5, which indicates the depth of investigation. CLASS 5 investigations consist of data collection pertaining to occurrences that do not meet the criteria of classes 1 through 4, and will be recorded for possible safety analysis, statistical reporting, or archival purposes. Therefore, the short narratives below that specify "CLASS 5", are unlikely to be followed by a TSB Final Report.

TSB File A01Q0090 (Class 5) - On June 6, 2001, a Cessna 172 carrying a flight instructor, a student pilot and a passenger, was on a VFR flight from Trois-Rivières to Grandes-Piles when it ran into high-tension wires that crossed the Saint Maurice River, near the village of Grandes-Piles. The wires, which were at 17.76 m (60 ft) above the water, were marked with orange conical markers. In an azimuth of 298°, with the sun at about 5° above the horizon, the pilot was blinded by the sun and the reflections in the water, and did not see the electrical wires. The aeroplane crashed into the river about 200 ft from the east shore. The occupants of the aeroplane were rescued by some shoreline residents. The aeroplane sank within minutes.

TSB File A01Q0169 (Class 5) - On October 13, 2001, a Cessna 185E on a local VFR flight, flew over Lac Chabanel, Quebec at very low altitude, pulled up and made a tight turn. During this manoeuver, the airplane stalled and crashed to the ground in the forest at a 60° angle. The occupants died on impact and in the fire that destroyed the aeroplane. There was no evidence of engine failure in the investigation; the weight and balance of the aeroplane were within their limits.

TSB File A02P0136 - On July 1, 2002, a Cessna 172 N was on takeoff from Runway 25 at Boundary Bay. As the wheels left the ground, the nose was seen to pitch up very steeply, the aircraft climbed to 100-150 ft, stalled, pitched its nose and right wing down and crashed. There was a post-impact fire, which was extinguished by a witness. The pilot was seriously injured and three passengers were killed. A Class 3 TSB Investigation is in progress.

TSB File A02P0136 (jpeg)

TSB File A02O0287 - On September 7, 2002, a flight instructor and a student were conducting a training flight in a float equipped Cessna 172. The aircraft crashed after a touch and go and came to rest inverted in a swamp adjacent to and at the south end of Lake St. John, near Orillia, Ontario. The aircraft was substantially damaged. Both occupants sustained serious injuries. A Class 3 TSB Investigation is in progress.

TSB A02O0287 (jpeg)

Foreign, mid-air collision - On October 1, 2002, two IL-38 transport aircraft of the Indian Navy collided in mid-air near Dabholim airport in Panaji, India, on October 1, 2002, killing 17 people - 12 personnel on board and 5 people on the ground. Several more on the ground were injured. Reports said the planes were flying parallel to each other, as part of the squadron's silver anniversary celebration, when their wings got entangled. This tragedy brings back memories of the March 29, 1985 mid-air collision of two Canadian Forces C-130 Hercules transport aircraft in Edmonton, under similarly eerie circumstances, killing 10 airmen. The two Hercules were also performing a ceremonial flypast when the accident happened. While these military applications are rare in civilian aviation, there are many of you who fly in formation on a regular basis, and we hope you can reflect on them.

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