Accident Synopses

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. The narratives below, which occurred between February and April 2006, are all "Class 5," and are unlikely to be followed by a TSB Final Report.

- On February 2, 2006, a Robinson R44 II helicopter was operating from the PenWest Mega Gas Plant, located approximately 40 NM south of Rainbow Lake, Alta. The pilot was manoeuvring the aircraft to refuel before commencing sling operations, when the main rotor blades came into contact with the fuel tank. The aircraft sustained substantial damage to the main rotor blades and power train. The fuel storage tank sustained damage and was reported as leaking. There were no injuries. TSB File A06W0023.

- On February 7, 2006, a privately-owned Piper PA-34-200 (Seneca II), was low on approach to Runway 26L at Pitt Meadows, B.C., airport. The aircraft struck several approach lights and a fence before coming to rest approximately 200 ft short of the runway threshold. The aircraft was substantially damaged, but the pilot was uninjured. TSB File A06P0018.

- On February 9, 2006, a privately-registered PA-46 Malibu was landing on Runway 33 at London, Ont. During the touchdown, the aircraft suddenly veered to the left. The pilot attempted to control the aircraft by applying right rudder and brake, but the aircraft departed the runway surface approximately 2 500 ft from the threshold. During the runway excursion, the left main gear and the nose gear collapsed, resulting in substantial damage to the aircraft. The runway condition report, taken approximately 35 min after the occurrence, was 50 percent bare and dry, 40 percent trace of snow and 10 percent ice. The runway friction index was 0.63. There were no injuries. TSB File A06O0036.

- On February 12, 2006, a Cessna 172N with only a student-pilot on board, was conducting a flight from St-Frédéric, Que., to Montmagny, Que. While en route the aircraft flew over a lake at low altitude, and the left wing hit some trees. The pilot continued the flight and conducted a touch-and-go at Montmagny before returning to St-Frédéric, where the aircraft landed without incident. The aircraft's left wing leading edge was damaged. The aircraft will be repaired before being returned to service. TSB File A06Q0026.

- On February 18, 2006, a Cessna A185F, with only the pilot on board, was conducting a landing on Lac Sept-Îles, Que. The aircraft was equipped with skis and retractable wheels. Upon landing, the aircraft slid approximately 200 ft before the left ski broke through the crust of the snow. The aircraft nosed over, and came to a stop on its back. Before taking off, the pilot inspected the lake surface by riding up and down it on a snowmobile, and decided it was suitable for landing. TSB File A06Q0031.

- On February 24, 2006, the pilot of an amateur-built Mustang P51D70 tail dragger aircraft was on the runway performing taxi tests, when directional control was lost, the aircraft veered off the left side of the runway, and struck a ditch. The landing gear collapsed and the aircraft was substantially damaged. There were no injuries to the pilot. TSB Report A06O0045.

- On March 5, 2006, a ski-equipped de Havilland DHC-6-100 Twin Otter had been parked overnight on the apron at La Ronge, Sask. The aircraft was stuck to the snow-covered apron, and at the start of taxiing, the skis broke free and the aircraft abruptly began moving forward. The aircraft struck a parked DHC-2 Turbo Beaver and a parked vehicle. The Twin Otter sustained substantial damage to the nose cone, nose landing gear, both engines and propellers, and the fuselage. The Turbo Beaver sustained substantial damage to the right wing, and the vehicle also sustained substantial damage. No injuries occurred. TSB Report A06C0041.

- On March 5, 2006, an amateur-built Murphy Rebel, with the pilot and one passenger on board, was flying from Brampton, Ont., to the pilot's cottage on Sturgeon Lake, Ont. The pilot was landing the wheel-equipped aircraft on the snow-covered lake, and misjudged the depth of snow. On touchdown, the aircraft nosed over and came to rest inverted. The pilot received minor injuries, and the aircraft was substantially damaged. TSB Report A06O0060.

- On March 19, 2006, an MD 369 helicopter descended into a confined area below tree line in order to drop off an item to a ground crew member. While trying to drop off the item, the pilot took his hand off the collective, the aircraft drifted off to the right, making contact with the top of a tree and severing part of the tail boom. Upon loss of tail rotor authority, the helicopter yawed to the right, and the tail boom struck another tree and then proceeded to spin out of control several times. The helicopter fell from approximately 25 to 30 ft and spun to the ground, finally landing on the pilot side. The pilot was not injured. TSB Report A06P0055.

- On March 24, 2006, a Grumman Goose G-21A was damaged on landing in Hardy Bay, Port Hardy, B.C. The aircraft had landed in a large bow wake created by a boat. The operator grounded the aircraft after maintenance identified upper wrinkles in the skin above the front windows and bent engine mounts. TSB Report A06P0044.

Artist's impression of aircraft landing on bow wake
Artist's impression of aircraft landing on bow wake

- On March 28, 2006, a Bellanca 7GCBC aircraft, with the pilot and one passenger on board, departed Pilgram Lake, Ont., for a return to the pilot's home strip. The pilot stopped to refuel near Wades Landing on Lake Nipissing, Ont. While taxiing on the frozen lake surface, the front wheels broke through the ice. The aircraft nosed over and came to rest upside down. The pilot and passenger were not injured. There was substantial damage to the aircraft. TSB Report A06O0077.

- On April 1, 2006, a Mooney M-20F aircraft departed the Steinbach, Man., airport for a pleasure flight with the pilot and one passenger on board. During final approach for Runway 14, the aircraft landed with the landing gear retracted. The pilot and passenger evacuated the aircraft without injury; the aircraft sustained substantial damage. TSB Report A06C0039.

- On April 1, 2006, a Cessna 177 aircraft departed Trail, B.C., for a VFR flight to Revelstoke, B.C., with the pilot and two passengers on board. The fuel gauges showed the tanks to be just under 3/4 full. The aircraft was not refuelled at Revelstoke, and the flight departed for Trail with the fuel gauges showing just under 1/2 full. On the return flight, a headwind and cloud were encountered, which forced the aircraft to be flown at a lower altitude and on an indirect route because of terrain. Since it appeared that the aircraft did not have enough fuel to reach Trail, a diversion to Castlegar, B.C., was attempted. About 11 NM north of the Castlegar airport, the engine stopped from fuel starvation. The pilot set up for a forced landing, but during the approach to his chosen field, the aircraft stalled and landed hard, breaking the right main wheel and sustaining substantial damage. The pilot sustained minor injuries, and the passengers were uninjured. TSB Report A06P0046.

- On April 4, 2006, a Beech 200 was conducting a flight between La Romaine (CTT5) and Natashquan (CYNA), with two crew members on board. While the aircraft was en route, at an altitude of 2 000 ft, the main door detached from the aircraft. Given the short distance between the two airports, the crew decided to continue on to Natashquan. The aircraft landed without incident. The door had not been locked properly before departure. TSB File A06Q0060.

- On April 7, 2006, an AS 350 B1 helicopter had dropped off six skiers atop a 5 500-ft mountain, and was descending at about 2 000 ft/min toward a landing area at about 1 800 ft. When the pilot began to pull in collective pitch to arrest the rate of descent prior to landing, the engine began to loose power and the low rotor rpm warning horn began to sound. The helicopter descended past the intended landing site to an unobstructed area about 150 ft further down the mountain, where it landed hard on snow-covered ground. The main rotors severed the tail boom, and one main rotor blade was shed. After exiting the aircraft, the pilot noted the engine was smoking heavily and extinguished it using a hand-held extinguisher and snow. The engine exhaust stack was damaged from the inside, and contained metal debris. TSB Report A06P0051.

- On April 19, 2006, a DHC3 on skis inbound from Chibougamau, landed on the ice runway at Lac Lagopède. During the landing roll, the aircraft was unable to stop in time, and struck another DHC3, which was parked on the runway, with the engine shut down. The left wing leading edge of the first DHC3 was substantially damaged. The right wing of parked DHC3 was ripped off in the collision. None of the occupants of either aircraft was injured. TSB File A06Q0070.

- On April 24, 2006, a Robinson R44 helicopter was preparing to depart from Terrace, B.C. The engine was running, and the rotor was turning while a second company pilot was loading fuel containers into the cargo compartment. The pilot-in-command, who was the only person on board, got out of the helicopter to help with the loading. While the pilot was outside, the helicopter began to lift off, rolled onto its left side, and collided with the ground. There was substantial damage to the helicopter, but no injuries or fire. TSB Report A06P0064.

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