Accident Synopses

Note: The following accident synopses are recent Transportation Safety Board of Canada (TSB) Class 5 events. These occurrences do not meet the criteria of classes 1 through 4, and are recorded by the TSB for possible safety analysis, statistical reporting, or archival purposes. The narratives may have been updated since publication. Unless otherwise specified, photos are provided by the TSB. For more information on any individual occurrence, please contact the TSB.

— On July 21, 2013, a Bell 206L-1 helicopter was being used in support of forest fire operations in and around Sherridon, Man. The pilot had fueled the helicopter at the fueling pad in Sherridon and had just lifted off. Approximately ¼ mi. away, the left boost pump caution light illuminated. The pilot initiated a return to the pad when the engine suddenly flamed out. The pilot conducted an autorotation into a clear area near the shoreline of a lake. The pilot landed as close to shore as possible, but didn’t feel the skids touch the bottom of the lake; so as a precaution, he rolled the helicopter onto its right side. This puts the advancing blade into the water and clears the cabin of a possible blade strike. There were no blade strikes and they were able to exit in shallow water without injury. The operator is in the process of recovering the helicopter and will transport it back to their main base for an examination of the fuel system. TSB File A13P0074.

— On July 25, 2013, a Cessna 185B was flying from Billy Bishop/Toronto City Airport (CYTZ), Ont., to Orillia Airport (CNJ4), Ont. While en route, the engine stopped. The pilot made a forced landing in a farm field and the aircraft came to rest inverted. When the aircraft was righted, the right fuel cap was found hanging from the attaching chain. Six L of fuel was recovered from the tanks. The aircraft was substantially damaged; however, the pilot was uninjured.TSB File A13O0142.

TSB File A13O0142

— On July 29, 2013, an advanced ultralight Norman Aviation J6 KARATOO was conducting a VFR flight from Rivière Thompson, about 4 NM west of Val-d'Or Airport (CYVO), to Rivière Harricana, about 15 NM north-northwest of CYVO. The pilot was alone on board. While the aircraft was pulling up after a third fly-over the landing area, it appears to have entered a spin and hit the ground at a marked nose-down angle. A fire started immediately after impact and the aircraft was destroyed. The pilot was fatally injured. TSB File A13Q0132.

— On August 1, 2013, a Cessna 305C taxied on the grass south of St-Jean Airport (CYJN), Que., during glider operations with only the pilot on board. The main landing gear got caught in a rut, and the aircraft nosed over and came to a stop on its nose. The aircraft sustained damage to the propeller and engine. The pilot was not injured. TSB File A13Q0135.

— On August 1, 2013, an amphibious float-equipped, amateur-built Altima Eagle XT (modified Cessna 206) departed Cooking Lake (CEZ3), Alta., for Hastings Lake, Alta., to practise water takeoffs and landings. During the first landing attempt in glassy water conditions, a hard landing was experienced which collapsed the front float strut and resulted in the propeller contacting the floats and the wing tips contacting the water. The aircraft remained upright and the pilot sustained no injuries. A local boater attended the scene and took the pilot to shore. TSB File A13W0112.

— On August 1, 2013, a Piper PA32-300 was on a flight from Villeneuve, Alta., to Whitehorse, Y.T. In the vicinity of Telsin, Y.T., the flight encountered an area of thunderstorms. While attempting to manoeuvre around the thunderstorms, the aircraft inadvertently became engulfed within the associated cumulonimbus cloud. The pilot lost control of the aircraft, but was eventually able to recover when the aircraft dropped out of the cloud. The aircraft continued to Whitehorse and later returned to Villeneuve, where a subsequent inspection revealed significant structural damage to the aircraft. TSB File A13W0142.

— On August 2, 2013, an amateur-built Smith PA-18 Replica seaplane took off from Lac-Huron, Que., for Lac-aux-Sables, Que., on its first flight with only the pilot on board. During the initial climb, the aircraft moved erratically along the longitudinal axis. Shortly after takeoff, at about 200 ft, the aircraft nosed down. The pilot shut off the engine and applied aft pressure on the yoke. The seaplane crashed into the trees. The pilot was not injured. The information obtained indicates that the aircraft had taken off with an anchor attached to its tail. TSB File A13Q0136.

— On August 2, 2013, an amateur-built Rotorway Exec 162F helicopter landed on sloped terrain approximately 8 NM southeast of Chilliwack, B.C., and the right skid sank into a rut resulting in the helicopter rolling to the right. The main rotor and tail boom struck the ground resulting in substantial damage. There were no injuries to the two people on board. TSB File A13P0200.

— On August 5, 2013, the pilot of a Bestoff Nynja advanced ultralight was preparing for a flight from Maniwaki, Que. After two unsuccessful attempts to start the engine, the pilot, alone on board, pushed the throttle forward and put the choke control in the ON position. When the engine started, the rpm increased and the aircraft started rolling and hit a parked car. The aircraft and the vehicle were damaged, but no one was injured. TSB File A13Q0149.

— On August 5, 2013, a Cessna 337 was inbound for Runway 06 at Stony Rapids Airport (CYSF), Sask. The aircraft subsequently landed on the runway with the landing gear retracted. The aircraft came to rest on the runway, and the crew evacuated the aircraft without injury. The aircraft sustained damage to its belly and front propeller. The aircraft had no mechanical anomalies and the landing gear was not extended prior to landing. TSB File A13C0090.

— On August 5, 2013, a Quad City Challenger II advanced ultralight on floats was taking off from Six Mile Lake, Ont., in the Georgian Bay area, when the aircraft stalled and crashed into the lake. The aircraft was substantially damaged and the pilot sustained minor injuries. TSB File A13O0147.

— On August 6, 2013, an amateur-built Dragonfly was conducting a local flight at St-Jean-sur-Richelieu Airport (CYJN), Que., in VFR conditions with the pilot and one passenger on board. When landing on the runway after conducting touch-and-gos, the aircraft porpoised, deviated from its course and went off the runway. The left landing gear leg was torn off and the propeller blades and the left wing tip were damaged. The pilot and his passenger were not injured. It was later determined that the aircraft had been caught by a lateral wind gust during landing. TSB File A13Q0145.

— On August 6, 2013, an AS-350-B2 helicopter landed approximately 5 NM west of Forrest Lake, Sask., to drop off some passengers. After touching down, two of the three passengers got out of the helicopter while the engine and rotor were still running. The passenger on the right removed his gear from the cargo bay and proceeded to the front of the helicopter where he was struck by the rotating rotor blade. The passenger on the left was not injured. The helicopter was located on a soft muskeg helipad facing into the sun. The front of the skid gear had sunk further into the muskeg than the rear due to the bear paws, resulting in a less than 6-ft clearance between the ground and the rotor disc. The passengers were briefed on safe departure procedures prior to egress. The injured passenger sustained serious injuries and was transported to a hospital in Fort McMurray for treatment. TSB File A13C0091.

— On August 9, 2013, an amateur-built Smith Cub 18 (tailwheel) was landing in Quesnel (CYQZ), B.C., on the grass beside the runway and ended up inverted. One of the two persons onboard suffered minor injuries. Both were wearing shoulder harnesses which they believe prevented more serious injuries. TSB File A13P0217.

— On August 13, 2013, an Air Tractor AT401 was departing Quill Lake, Sask., on an application flight.  During the takeoff run, the engine (Pratt & Whitney R-1340) sputtered and lost power. The pilot rejected the takeoff, but could not stop the aircraft on the runway. The aircraft continued 200 feet past the end of the runway into a canola field, and overturned. The pilot suffered minor injuries and the aircraft sustained substantial damage. Some of the chemical (Silencer) and some avgas was released from the overturned aircraft. The aircraft operator is recovering it for repair. TSB File A13C0096.

TSB File A13C0096 (RCMP photo)

— On August 13, 2013, a Cessna 188A AgTruck was spraying about 5 NM north of Indian Head, Sask. While manoeuvring, a wing tip entered the crop and the aircraft flew into the terrain. The aircraft sustained substantial damage. The pilot was uninjured and there was no fire. TSB File A13C0097.

— On August 15, 2013, an amateur-built Van’s RV4 with the pilot on board was leaving Mascouche Airport (CSK3), Que., for Lac-à-la-Tortue Airport (CSL3), Que. During the takeoff run on Runway 29, the aircraft deviated to the left and veered off the runway, ending up in the grass some 50 ft from the runway edge. The right landing gear leg was substantially damaged. The pilot was not injured. TSB File A13Q0147.

— On August 15, 2013, a Bell 204B helicopter departed Pelican Narrows (CJW4), Sask., on smoke patrol cruising at 2 500 ft ASL. The aircraft encountered turbulence, followed by porpoising, accompanied by left and right yawing and strong vibrations. The pilot initiated a descent to an open area near a lake. During the descent, the aircraft began to yaw to the right. The aircraft landed at the shoreline with the front of the skid gear and nose in the water. The helicopter was shut down and evacuated. Inspection revealed that a bolt securing the pitch change link to the pitch change horn of one tail rotor blade had failed. The blade had struck the side of the vertical stabilizer (pylon). Inspection of the failed bolt indicated that it had failed due to fatigue. There were indications that the bolt had been loose at some time in the past. The operator is changing their maintenance practices to ensure that the bolts are replaced at each tail rotor installation. Bolts will also be replaced if they are subsequently found to be loose during service. TSB File A13C0099.

— On August 16, 2013, a Grumman G-164A was engaged in aerial application of Lorsban insecticide ½ NM west of Aylsham, Sask. When performing an eastward application pass into the sun, the pilot lost ground reference. The aircraft descended into the canola crop and impacted the ground. The pilot was wearing a helmet and was secured with a four-point harness. The pilot was able to exit the aircraft and was uninjured. The aircraft was substantially damaged. An ELT signal was not detected. Some of the chemical was released. TSB File A13C0100.

— On August 16, 2013, a Cessna 182M departed Springbank Airport (CYBW), Alta., for a sightseeing trip to the Kananaskis area. While in cruise flight near Mt. Allan, at approximately 8 500 ft ASL, the pilot noticed that the oil pressure indication had decreased to zero. Engine performance had not degraded, but the pilot decided to divert toward a local highway in case a precautionary landing was required. During the descent, the engine performance degraded rapidly and smoke was observed in the cabin. A “Mayday” was transmitted on 121.5 MHz and a forced landing was planned for Highway 40, south of the Trans-Canada Highway. During the approach, an oncoming vehicle was noticed, leaving the roadway ditch as the pilot’s only option. The adjacent field was ruled out due to traversing power lines. The aircraft landed beside the highway and collided with signage, resulting in substantial damage to the right wing and minor damage to the left wing tip. There were no injuries to the pilot or sole passenger. TSB File A13W0119.

— On August 16, 2013, a Piper PA-25-235 Pawnee departed Rose Valley, Sask., on an aerial application flight. The aircraft wreckage was discovered in a grain field, and the pilot had sustained fatal injuries. The aircraft was substantially damaged, but there was no post-crash fire. TSB investigators were deployed to the site. An inspection of the wreckage revealed both fuel caps were missing and both fuel cells contained residual fuel only. First responders and TSB investigators did not notice any evidence of a fuel leak or spill in the surrounding area. Investigators searched the crop in the surrounding area and the aircraft operating areas at the departure point but did not locate either fuel cap.  TSB File A13C0102.

TSB File A13C0102

Both fuel caps were missing and could not be found. TSB File A13C0102

— On August 18, 2013, an amateur-built Van’s RV7 was on a VFR flight from St-Jean Airport (CYJN), Que., to a private runway about 2 km east of Inverness, Que., with the pilot and one passenger on board. After several attempts to land in crosswind conditions, the aircraft touched down, took off and touched down again. The aircraft then went off the runway on the east side, crossed a road and flipped over into a ditch. The pilot and the passenger were not injured. The aircraft sustained substantial damage, but there was no post-impact fire. TSB File A13Q0148.

— On August 18, 2013, an amateur-built Kitfox V aircraft was carrying out low-and-over flights at the pilot’s newly constructed airstrip near Barss Corner, N.S. During the third flight, the aircraft was on a left-base-to-final turn when it pitched over and entered a right-hand spin. The aircraft impacted the ground in a near-vertical attitude. A post-crash fire ensued which destroyed the aircraft. The pilot, who was the sole occupant, was fatally injured. TSB File A13A0097.

— On August 23, 2013, an amphibious Cessna A185F departed Fort McMurray, Alta., at 13:23 MDT. At 14:13 MDT, an overflying aircraft spotted the floatplane overturned in a lake 24 NM south of Fort McMurray. The pilot, who was the lone occupant, was fatally injured. The wheels were found in the down position. TSB File A13W0125.

— On August 25, 2013, a Pioneer II glider was being towed at the London Soaring Club, 3 NM west of Embro, Ont. The glider began to oscillate laterally shortly after takeoff. The glider released from the towline at approximately 250 ft AGL and began to bank to the left. The bank continued with the glider contacting the ground at a steep nose down attitude. The pilot, the sole occupant, was fatally injured. TSB File A13O0160.

— On September 1, 2013, an amphibious Volmer VJ-22 Sportsman was departing from the water at Cowichan Lake, B.C., with two persons on board. During the take-off run the aircraft struck a boat wake, nosed over and sank. Both occupants were wearing personal floatation devices and egressed with minor injuries. TSB File A13P0213.

— On September 4, 2013, a Cessna A185E was on a flight from Eleanor Lake, Ont., to Remi Lake, Ont. The aircraft experienced a power loss and the pilot attempted a forced landing on Newfeld Lake, Ont. On approach to the lake, the aircraft encountered a crosswind and landed in trees along the shoreline. The 406 MHz ELT was activated. The pilot, who was wearing a shoulder harness, escaped without injury. TSB File A13O0167.

— On September 8, 2013, an amateur-built Bushby Mustang MII, with two people on board, was flying from a private airport in St-Benoit-de-Mirabel, Que. Shortly after taking off from Runway 33, the aircraft struck the ground and flipped over to the right of the runway. The two occupants were sent to hospital. The aircraft was substantially damaged. TSB File A13Q0157.

— On September 10, 2013, a Boeing B75N1 Stearman was en route from Regina, Sask., to St. Andrews, Man., with a stop for fuel in Brandon, Man. Upon takeoff and initial climb from Runway 26 at Brandon, one of the propeller blades failed at the blade root (Hamilton Standard 5404) and departed the aircraft. A severe vibration ensued which broke the Continental W670 engine from the engine mounts, causing the engine to fall off in flight. The aircraft pitched up and became uncontrollable. The aircraft struck the runway in a nose down attitude and both occupants sustained serious injuries. There was no fire and both occupants were taken to hospital. TSB File A13C0116.

TSB File A13C0116

— On September 10, 2013, the owner of a newly acquired amphibious hull-equipped Osprey-2 amateur-built aircraft was conducting touch-and-gos on Black Sturgeon Lake, Ont., north of Kenora Airport (CYQK), Ont. During a takeoff attempt, the aircraft began to porpoise and became prematurely airborne. The left wing stalled and the aircraft contacted the water and cartwheeled while remaining upright. The pilot sustained minor injuries and the aircraft incurred substantial damage to its right wing. The winds were light and the water was calm at the time of the occurrence. TSB File A13C0118.

— On September 12, 2013, a Cessna 180K took off from Lac Manouane, Que., along with two other aircraft. On takeoff, the pilot heard a slight popping sound coming from the engine and decided to circle the lake while communicating with a mechanic who was piloting one of the other two aircraft, a Cessna 180B. Reassured about his aircraft’s condition, the pilot of the C180K resumed his planned heading and, by doing so, found himself converging with the C180B, which had modified its path to the right to take advantage of a higher ceiling. Seeing the imminent impact, the pilot of the C180K banked the aircraft sharply to the right while lowering the nose as far as possible. The left wing tip struck the bottom of the C180B’s float. The pilot lost control of the aileron but managed to stabilize the aircraft. He then skimmed the treetops to slow down and crashed in the forest. The gas in the wing tanks spilled on the slightly-injured pilot, who managed to exit the aircraft by breaking the side window with his feet. The pilot found shelter and was rescued by a team on the ground 3 hr later. The aircraft that was struck (the C180B) sustained minimal damage to one float and remained above the crash site for 90 min to maintain visual contact of the pilot and to organize the rescue. TSB File A13Q0159.

— On September 26, 2013, a Weatherly 620B spray aircraft was being photographed in flight at Hnatko Farms (Westlock) Aerodrome (CHF3), Alta. During a low pass, the photographer on the ground was struck by the aircraft’s left wing tip and suffered serious injuries. The left wing tip fairing detached during the collision; however, the pilot was able to control the aircraft and return for a landing. TSB File A13W0145.

— On September 28, 2013, an American Aviation AA-5A was taxiing at St. Catharines/Niagara District Airport (CYSN), Ont., in preparation for a flight to London (CYXU), Ont., when the aircraft’s right wing tip struck a perimeter fence. The aircraft came to rest with the nose section penetrating the fence. The aircraft was substantially damaged. The pilot, the sole occupant, was uninjured. TSB File A13O0188.

— On October 1, 2013, a Piper PA12 on floats, operating VFR from Fermont, Que., to Lac Louise, Que., flipped over while landing on the glassy water of Petit Lac Paradis, Que. The pilot misjudged the height of the aircraft above the water. He was able to evacuate the submerged aircraft and was rescued by witnesses in a nearby boat. He was not injured. The aircraft was substantially damaged and was later towed closer to shore for salvage. TSB File A13Q0170.

— On October 3, 2013, after a hard landing at Lac Magpie, about 100 NM northeast of Sept-Îles, Que., a Maule M-7-260 sustained substantial damage to its float attachments and its propeller struck the surface of the water. The pilot and the passenger were not injured and were able to evacuate the aircraft which, despite the damage, was still floating on its floats. The aircraft was left unsupervised for a few days near the shore before being found partly submerged in about 4 ft of water. TSB File A13Q0204.

— On October 11, 2013, an amateur-built SPORTRAINER landed on the grass south of Runway 23 at Bromont Airport (CZBM), Que. Once on the ground, the pilot backtracked on Runway 23 towards the air terminal with flaps lowered. Wanting to accelerate the taxiing to free up the runway for another aircraft in the circuit as quickly as possible, the pilot increased the power. That was when he lost control of the aircraft. The aircraft exited the runway, fell into a ravine and came to rest on its nose. During the loss of control, the left wing touched the ground. The aircraft sustained substantial damage to the propeller. The pilot, alone on board, was not injured. TSB File A13Q0176.

— On October 16, 2013, a Cessna U206F was having the prop turned over by hand due to the cold temperature. The magnetos had inadvertently been left on and the engine started with no one at the controls. The pilot attempted to get in and control the aircraft but was not able to do so. The aircraft ran out of control into trees and down an embankment where it came to rest. There was substantial damage to the wings and propeller; the nose gear collapsed. TSB File A13W0159.

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