News & Comment

Too Rushed to Check: Misrigged Flying Controls

Posted by on 2:34 pm in Accidents & Incidents, Fixed Wing, Human Factors / Performance, Maintenance / Continuing Airworthiness / CAMOs, Safety Management

Too Rushed to Check: Misrigged Flying Controls If you had spent 2 years rebuilding a classic 1947 Piper PA-12 you’d make the time to check the rigging of the flying controls before first flight, right?  Sadly, the 25,000 hour pilot in this fatal case study was in a rush… Accident Flight On 8 April 2017 PA-12 N3280M was being readied at Orlando Sanford International Airport, Florida for its first flight since a restoration that included replacement of the wing and fuselage fabric, flight control cables and electrical wiring. The US...

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NTSB Comes Out For Gun Control

Posted by on 6:46 pm in Accidents & Incidents, Helicopters, Safety Management

NTSB Comes Out For Gun Control With Trump in the White House its major news when a Federal agency comes out for gun control…if only to avoid fouling flight controls rather than more innocent fatalities. The Accident Flight The pilot of Robinson R22 helicopter N843SH was taking a passenger up for the pilot’s third “hog hunt” flight in Wadsworth, TX on 13 February 2018. As they reached a height of about 40 to 50 ft above ground “the passenger’s gun [butt] became lodged in the cyclic control”. According...

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“Delivering Our Priorities”: HeliOffshore 2018 Conference Report

Posted by on 3:30 pm in Accidents & Incidents, Crises / Emergency Response / SAR, Design & Certification, Helicopters, Human Factors / Performance, HUMS / VHM / UMS / IVHM, Maintenance / Continuing Airworthiness / CAMOs, Offshore, Oil & Gas / IOGP / Energy, Regulation, Resilience, Safety Culture, Safety Management, Survivability / Ditching

HeliOffshore Conference 2018 Report: “Delivering Our Priorities” The offshore helicopter safety association, HeliOffshore held its fourth conference and AGM in Baveno, Italy 5-6 May 2018. The focus was on ‘Delivering Our Priorities’ for improved offshore helicopter safety. Being close to Leonardo‘s sites just north of Milan, the Italian manufacturer arranged a formation fly-past at the start of the conference of an AW169, AW139 and AW189. The conference was attended by a record 203 industry leaders from...

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When Screens Go Blank: NTSB on a 787 Display Loss After a Lightning Strike

Posted by on 12:15 pm in Accidents & Incidents, Design & Certification, Fixed Wing, Maintenance / Continuing Airworthiness / CAMOs, Safety Management

When Screens Go Blank: NTSB on a 787 Display Loss After a Lightning Strike On 10 October 2014, United Airlines (UA) Boeing 787-824 N26906 was struck by lightning during initial climb, a few minutes into a flight from London Heathrow (LHR) to Houston (IAH).  The US National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) published their final report in April 2018. The Incident Flight The NTSB explain that: The flight crew reported that the aircraft was flying through a “moderate non-CB (cumulonimbus) rain shower” with cloud tops of 10,000 feet mean sea...

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Helicopter Throttle Bracket Left Unsecured After Maintenance

Posted by on 7:12 pm in Accidents & Incidents, Helicopters, Human Factors / Performance, Maintenance / Continuing Airworthiness / CAMOs, Safety Management

Helicopter Throttle Bracket Left Unsecured After Maintenance On 11 August 2014, a Hughes 269C helicopter, N7432F, impacted trees and a river bank in a steep ravine following a partial loss of engine power near Darrington, Washington. The pilot, a 59 year old airline pilot, was uninjured. The US National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) report that: The pilot reported that during a flight in the rented helicopter he was descending out of 5,000 ft. As he approached 4,000 ft, he increased collective and noticed that the engine was slowing...

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An AW109SP, Overweight VIPs and Crew Stress

Posted by on 3:28 pm in Accidents & Incidents, Business Aviation, Helicopters, Human Factors / Performance, Safety Culture, Safety Management

An AW109SP, Overweight VIPs and Crew Stress On 15 December 2014 Leonardo AW109SP helicopter A6-FLP, operated by Falcon Aviation Services (FAS), sustained significant damage after taking off overloaded in Abu Dhabi, UAE.  This was an unusual accident where the crew were put under considerable stress during a poorly planned and executed VIP flight booking. Flight Preparations The Air Accident Investigation Sector (AAIS) of the UAE General Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA) say in their safety investigation report that: The FAS Sales Department...

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NTSB Probable Causes and Bad Apples

Posted by on 3:06 pm in Accidents & Incidents, Fixed Wing, Helicopters, Human Factors / Performance, Safety Culture

NTSB Probable Causes and Bad Apples During an on-line discussion about an Aerossurance post to mark the 20th anniversary of a CFIT accident in Guam, there was criticism that the NTSB ‘Probable Cause‘ was: The captain’s failure to adequately brief and execute the nonprecision approach and the first officer’s and flight engineer’s failure to effectively monitor and cross-check the captain’s execution of the approach. Some contributors rightly felt this simplistically blamed the crew (i.e. taking a ‘bad...

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A330 Starts to Taxi Before Tug is Clear

Posted by on 11:56 am in Accidents & Incidents, Air Traffic Management / Airspace, Airfields / Heliports / Helidecks, Fixed Wing, Human Factors / Performance, Safety Management

A330 Starts to Taxi Before Tug is Clear In the early hours of 9 September 2016 AirAsia X Airbus A330-343X 9M-XXK pushed back from gate D12 at Melbourne Airport, Victoria.  The Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) say in their safety investigation report that: The aircraft maintenance engineer (AME) conducting the pushback was provided by a contracted company, the tug and tug driver were provided by a third company. At 0008, after both engines were started, the AME disconnected the headset and tow bar from both the aircraft and the tug,...

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C208B Force Landing After Inadequate Maintenance Fault Finding

Posted by on 10:06 am in Accidents & Incidents, Fixed Wing, Human Factors / Performance, Maintenance / Continuing Airworthiness / CAMOs, Safety Management

C208B Force Landing After Inadequate Maintenance Fault Finding On 12 May 2016 Cessna 208B Caravan N1114A of the Parachute Center was substantially damaged during a forced landing near Acampo, California, 1 minute into a skydiving flight. The aircraft ended inverted in a vineyard, the pilot suffered minor injuries but the 17 passengers were all uninjured. According to the US National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) in their safety investigation report: The pilot reported that…as the airplane passed 1,000 ft above ground level (agl),...

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The “Hold My Beer” Helicopter Accident

Posted by on 11:39 am in Accidents & Incidents, Helicopters, Human Factors / Performance

The “Hold My Beer” Helicopter Accident “Hold My Beer” is label applied on-line to video footage of many dangerous and/or ill-advised stunts, where the impending embarrassing and often painful failure is usually glaringly obvious before the end of the video. The US National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) has reported on a helicopter accident that had a fatal alcohol fuelled ending. The Accident Flight On 12 June 2016 Robinson Helicopter Company (RHC) R44 II Raven N789MR impacted the ground during takeoff from the...

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