Monday, February 13, 2012

Cessna 210 Centurion, Madewell Inc., N9619T: Fatal accident occurred February 09, 2012 in Morgan, Utah

NTSB Identification: WPR12FA098
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Thursday, February 09, 2012 in Morgan, UT
Probable Cause Approval Date: 04/10/2013
Aircraft: CESSNA 210, registration: N9619T
Injuries: 2 Fatal.

NTSB investigators either traveled in support of this investigation or conducted a significant amount of investigative work without any travel, and used data obtained from various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

During a volunteer flight to pick up a passenger, the non-instrument-rated pilot had to divert to an alternate airport due to low ceilings at his destination. After picking up the passenger and departing, the pilot requested and received a flight-following clearance. Shortly thereafter, he reported that he was going to turn the airplane out of a valley. There was no further communication from the pilot after this transmission. The last radar target depicted the airplane at an elevation of 7,100 feet. The wreckage was located 3.5 miles from the last radar target in treed, mountainous terrain at an elevation of 7,700 feet. A postaccident examination of the wreckage revealed no evidence of mechanical malfunctions or failures that would have precluded normal operation. Weather information current at the time of the flight reported mountain obscuration and precipitation. Review of weather briefing data showed no record of the pilot obtaining a weather briefing prior to departure. Given the forecast and reported weather conditions, it is likely that the pilot encountered instrument meteorological conditions and was unable to see the trees and terrain prior to the collision.

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident as follows:
The non-instrument-rated pilot’s poor planning and continued visual flight rules flight into instrument meteorological conditions and failure to maintain clearance from mountainous terrain.

HISTORY OF FLIGHT

On February 9, 2012, about 1348 mountain standard time, N9619T, a Cessna 210, collided with mountainous terrain about 9 miles east-northeast of Morgan County Airport, Morgan, Utah. The private pilot and passenger sustained fatal injuries during the 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 flight. The airplane was substantially damaged. The flight originated from Morgan and was destined for Converse County Airport, Douglas, Wyoming. The pilot requested and received a flight following clearance. 

The pilot was conducting a mission for the Wyoming Pilots for Christ. He was volunteering his services to transport the passenger, a nurse, from the Salt Lake City area back to her home. According to Wyoming Pilots for Christ personnel, the pilot had departed Douglas about 1000 MST and intended to land at Salt Lake City International Airport, Salt Lake City, Utah. However, the pilot landed in Morgan due to low ceilings in the area. The passenger then met him at the Morgan airport.

PILOT INFORMATION

The pilot, age 47, held a private pilot certificate with airplane and single-engine land ratings. He held a third-class medical certificate issued September 27, 2011, with no limitations or waivers. The pilot’s logbook was reviewed and showed about 553 total flight hours. He had flown about 18 hours in the last 90 days and 10 hours in the last 30 days.

AIRPLANE INFORMATION

The high wing airplane, SN 57419, had four seats and retractable gear. It was manufactured in 1961. It was powered by a Continental IO-470-E (17) engine. Review of the maintenance records showed an annual inspection was completed on February 10, 2011, at a total time of 3,465 hours. The airplane was equipped with a Garmin 430.

AIR TRAFFIC CONTROL INFORMATION

An NTSB air traffic control specialist reviewed the air traffic control information pertaining to the flight, as well as the pilot’s flight earlier that day from Sheridan, Wyoming, to Morgan, Utah. 
Review of the radar track of the pilot’s inbound flight from Sheridan showed radar targets along the mountain range to the east of the pilot’s landing airport. The radar targets showed several course reversals along the mountain range. The track then ended prior to the pilot’s landing in Morgan, likely due to limited radar coverage in the area.

Upon departure from Morgan, the pilot requested and received a flight following clearance at 1346 MST, and advised that his destination was Douglas. Shortly thereafter, the pilot reported that he was going to turn the airplane out of a valley. There was no further communication from the pilot. The last radar target was at 1448 at an altitude of 7,100 feet, approximately 3.5 statute miles from the accident site.

METEOROLOGICAL INFORMATION

An NTSB senior meteorologist completed a weather study. A composite of the NWS Weather Depiction Charts for 1200 (1900Z) and 1500 MST (2200Z) on February 9, 2012, depicted a small area of reported instrument flight rule (IFR) conditions over Idaho immediately north of the accident site at 1200 MST by a shaded contour, with another area over Colorado to the east-southeast. The areas were enclosed by a larger area of marginal visual flight rule (MVFR) conditions by an unshaded contour which extended over northern Utah and the accident site. 

At 1355, an aviation routine weather report (METAR) for Hill Air Force Base, located about 17 nautical miles west-southwest of the accident site, reported the following conditions: wind, calm, visibility, 7 statute miles, clouds, few at 2,700 feet, overcast at 3,200 feet, temperature, 3 degrees Centigrade, dew point, 0 degrees Centigrade, altimeter, 30.33 inches of mercury. The subsequent observations indicated a ceiling overcast from 2,100 to 2,600 feet agl or from 6,900 to 7,400 feet msl assuming normal rounding to a hundred feet, and with a period of visibility reduced to 5 miles in mist. The cloud heights would have implied a high likelihood of mountain obscuration conditions over the accident site.

At the accident airplanes altitude of 7,700 feet the sounding indicated a temperature of -3º C, a temperature-dew point temperature spread of less than 1 degree C, a relative humidity of 98 percent, and a wind from 275 degrees at 9 knots. The sounding did not indicate a high probability of turbulence due to the light winds and low vertical shear. A probability of icing existed in clouds and in precipitation above 6,000 feet.

The GOES-15 infrared band 4 satellite image at 4X magnification for 1415 MST (2215Z) on February 9, 2012, depicted multiple layers of low to mid-level clouds over Utah during the period. No defined cumulonimbus clouds or thunderstorms were identified over the area. The infrared image indicated a radiative cloud top temperature over the accident site at 260 degrees kelvin or -13.16 degrees C, which corresponded to tops near 14,500 feet over the accident site.

The GOES-15 visible band 1 image at 1415 MST (2115Z) depicted low stratiform clouds over the area with a second mid-level band of altostratus bordering on the accident site. The image indicates a high probability of mountain obscuration with the low stratiform type clouds over the region. 

The forecast for northern Utah indicated scattered to broken clouds at 10,000 feet layered to 17,000 feet were expected over the region. The forecast however was amended by AIRMET Sierra update 6 for mountain obscuration due to clouds and precipitation issued at the same period.
Review of weather briefing data from Lockheed Martin Flight Service, CSC DUATS, and DTC DUATS, showed no record of the pilot obtaining a weather briefing.

WRECKAGE AND IMPACT INFORMATION

Initial responders reported that the airplane impacted a northwest-facing, treed slope, at an elevation of approximately 7,700 feet mean sea level. The debris field was approximately 75 feet in length and on a general heading of west-northwest.

MEDICAL AND PATHOLOGICAL INFORMATION

The Utah Office of the Medical Examiner performed an autopsy on the pilot on February 11, 2012. The manner of death was reported as an accident due to injuries as a result of the accident. 

The FAA Bioaeronautical Science Research Laboratory, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, completed forensic toxicology on specimens from the pilot. The report was negative for volatiles, cyanide, and tested drugs. The report stated 10 percent carbon monoxide was detected in the blood. Cotinine and nicotine were also detected.

TESTS AND RESEARCH

An NTSB investigator, the FAA accident coordinator, and a representative from Cessna Aircraft Company examined the wreckage. Examination of the recovered airframe revealed that it was separated into numerous pieces. The right wing was separated from the fuselage and exhibited crushing damage along the entire span of the leading edge. The right wing lift strut remained attached to the forward spar and a fragmented portion of the fuselage frame. The right flap was in the retracted position. The flap actuator measured 0.15 inches which equated to a retracted position. The aileron remained attached to its respective hinge points. Aileron control cable continuity was established to the wing root. The separations of the control cables at the wing root were consistent with cuts made by recovery personnel. The fuel bladder was fragmented. The fuel cap was secure; however the structure surrounding the fuel cap was separated from the wing. 

The left wing was separated from the fuselage. The left wing lift strut was separated from the wing and fuselage. The aileron was separated from the wing structure. The flap assembly remained attached to the inboard portion of the left wing. The fuel bladder was fractured. The fuel cap remained attached to the upper wing surface and was in place. The outboard portion of the left wing was not recovered (recovery personnel reported it was in a 70-foot tall tree). 

The aft portion of the fuselage was separated from the forward portion of the fuselage. The vertical stabilizer and rudder remained attached to their respective mounts. The inboard sections of the horizontal stabilizers remained attached. The elevators were separated from their mounts. The right elevator was fragmented and the trim tab was separated. The elevator trim actuator was fragmented which prevented measurement of the actuator. Flight control cable continuity was established from the elevator and rudder control horns forward to the cuts made by recovery personnel. 

Control cable continuity was established from the cockpit controls to the area of cuts made by wreckage recovery personnel. Continuity for aileron controls was obtained throughout the aileron control chain to the left and right wing root. The seats and seat tracks were fragmented and separated from the fuselage. The pilot side seat engagement pin was found engaged to a separated portion of seat track. 

The airspeed indicator was found separated and the airspeed needle was observed stuck at 180 knots. The altimeter setting was observed at 30.22. Both doors were separated from the fuselage. The pitot-static system was fragmented. The unobstructed pitot tube was intact and separated from the wing structure. 

Examination of the Teledyne Continental Motors (TCM) IO-470-E (17) engine, serial number 088778-R, revealed that all six cylinders remained attached to the engine crankcase. All engine accessories remained attached to the engine with the exception of the starter, which was separated from its mount. The exhaust, propeller, and oil filler cap were separated. The oil sump was crushed upwards. The top spark plugs, rocker arm covers, fuel pump, oil pump, left and right magnetos, and throttle body fuel control were removed. The engine crankshaft was rotated by hand using a hand tool attached to an accessory mount pad. Rotational continuity was established throughout the engine and valve train. Thumb compression and suction was obtained on all six cylinders. Both magnetos produced sparks at all posts when manually rotated. The top spark plugs were examined and found to be consistent with worn out normal when compared to the Champion Check-A-Plug comparison card. Light gray coloring was noted within the electrode areas. Examination of the fuel system revealed no contamination or anomalies. The vacuum pump drive shaft rotated freely by hand. The vacuum pump was disassembled and the rotor and vanes were intact and undamaged.

The propeller was separated from the engine crankshaft propeller flange. Both propeller blades exhibited aft bending and blade twisting and remained attached to the propeller hub. Both propeller blades exhibited multi directional scratching on the forward face of the blade. 

No evidence of pre-impact mechanical malfunction was noted during the examination of the recovered wreckage.

ORGANIZATIONAL AND MANAGEMENT INFORMATION

According to the Pilots for Christ website, “Pilots for Christ International, Inc. is a membership organization that posts public requests, for consideration by our member pilot's and non-pilot's regarding volunteer urgent travel opportunities. The decision to accept and provide travel assistance, by yourself is an individual matter between yourself and the person(s), requesting travel. Pilots for Christ International, Inc. offers communication, (contact, urgency of request and indemnity waiver) assistance, only, between the requester and yourself as a pilot or non-pilot. You must always abide by all Federal, State and local legal requirements for operating your aircraft, and/or automobile. The requirement to meet these licensed operating regulations is strictly your responsibility, and is not the responsibility of Pilots for Christ International, Inc. As a pilot or non-pilot you are not required to be a commercial or professional individual and you are not required to meet the same standards. You are a private individual volunteering your aircraft, and/or automobile and time to help all those in need of urgent transportation, within the scope of your licensed abilities.”

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

The Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association has an online course designed to assist volunteer pilots. The course “Public Benefit Flying: Balancing Safety and Compassion”, can be found at www.airsafetyinstitute.org/volunteerpilots.


Daleray Madewell, Pilots of Christ Wyoming


A Douglas pilot was making a charity flight when his plane went down in northern Utah last week.

Pilots For Christ, or, Wyoming’s Big Sky Country Love for Christ, as it states on the website, offers free air transport to those in need of medical care or emergency transportation. Last week, Daleray Madewell made his last flight while attempting to get Jennifer Sebesta home to Glenrock.

“Jennifer had gone down to Salt Lake City with her Grandmother, I believe it was, on a life flight, and then had no means to get back home. They called our organization and so we’d gone down just to bring her back home.”

Wyoming Chapter President, Steve Barbour says a memorial service for Daleray Madewell happens Thursday at 10 a.m. in the Fort Reno Building at the State Fair Grounds in Douglas.

A memorial service for Jennifer Sebesta is tentatively scheduled for 11 a.m. Saturday in the Glenrock High School auditorium.

Report raises questions about crash that killed North Vancouver pilot

The North Vancouver pilot of a small Beechcraft airplane that crashed near Vancouver International Airport in October was struggling to regain control of the aircraft in the seconds before the plane crashed, said an interim report from the Transportation Safety Board.

Luc Fortin, 44, lost control of the plane in the very last moments of the plane’s approach, banking left and pitching nose down less than a kilometre from the runway.

Fortin managed to level the wings and pull the nose up slightly in the final seconds of the flight, according to the report. But it was already too late.

The landing gear collapsed on impact and the plane skidded along the road just outside an airport fence, bursting into flames.

The two pilots — Fortin and first-officer Matt Robic, 26, of Mission —were both injured in the crash, but would have survived if not for the fire that engulfed the aircraft, said the report.

It noted pointedly that six years ago, the board recommended changes to aircraft design to reduce the risk of post-crash fires.

Those recommendations have largely been ignored by both Canadian and international safety regulators, said the board.

The interim report released Thursday described how one emergency window exit on the plane was blocked by fire and a passenger struggled to open the twisted door of the plane as it was engulfed in flames. After several attempts, he got the door open, and helped other injured passengers out of the plane with the aid of passersby who ran up and pulled people out of the wreckage.

But there was confusion about how many passengers and pilots were actually onboard, according to the report.

Firefighters who arrived on the scene worked to free the pilots who were trapped in the cockpit while the fire was being doused.

The aircraft’s electrical wiring arced continuously, presenting a danger to rescuers while they worked, said the report.

Both pilots later died in hospital as a result of burns.

The board noted a 2006 study showed in many cases where fire broke out after a plane crash, the crash itself was survivable, but that the flames resulted in death or injury. At that time, the board recommended adding insulating materials to areas of planes vulnerable to friction heating, systems to contain fuel in the event of a crash, and improved design allowing passengers to escape, among others.

But regulators have “largely ignored these recommendations,” said the report.

The Northern Thunderbird airplane — originally bound for Kelowna — was returning to the airport on a visual approach Oct. 27 because oil was leaking from its left engine. But the engine never lost power and no emergency was declared.

There appeared to be no mechanical failure involved in the accident, according to the report.

A team led by investigator Bill Yearwood will analyze further data before coming up with a final report and recommendations.

Fortin, an experienced pilot, left behind a wife and young daughter.

Directorate General of Civil Aviation orders removal of Jet’s chief of flight safety

The regulator took the action against Jet Airways for allowing a trainee pilot to land a packed flight on October 14 in Mumbai, violating safety norms. DGCA had summoned Jet officials for an explanation on Monday

New Delhi: The Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) ordered the removal of Jet Airways (India) Ltd’s chief of flight safety Vishesh Oberoi for failing to perform his duty as the airline’s top safety manager, a first in recent times.

The regulator took the action against Jet Airways for allowing a trainee pilot to land a packed flight on 14 October in Mumbai, violating safety norms. DGCA had summoned Jet officials for an explanation on Monday.

The airline was also found to have violated rules, including not informing the regulator about the incident, Mint reported on 13 February.

Jet Airways chief executive Nikos Kardasis, along with other officials, had an hour-long meeting with Bharat Bhushan, the director general of civil aviation, on Monday, said a government official who declined to be named.

“The head of flight safety has been ordered to be removed immediately for failing to perform his duties,” the official said. A second government official confirmed the move and added that the airline has to inform the regulator on the appointment of a new chief of flight safety.

A Jet spokesperson declined to respond to an email. Phone calls and text messages seeking comment remained unanswered.

DGCA approves the chief of flight safety for each airline. The official is directly responsible to the regulator and is required to make regular reports about matters of safety. An airline is expected to voluntarily report safety issues to the regulator, including minor snags.

DGCA came to know of the incident through a complaint on 5 February.

“About four months back, Jet Airways captain Sheikh Ahmed was operating a flight into Mumbai along with F/O (flight officer) Khajuria (co-pilot). There was a supernumerary pilot on board. I understand that the captain asked the first officer to vacate his seat and he permitted the supernumerary pilot to occupy the right seat for the landing,” the complaint said. “This is a very serious violation and endangers the lives of all on board. I understand Khajuria gave a written complaint. There appears to be an intervention from someone to soften the action against the captain, who was merely suspended for three months and is now back to flying as a captain.”

The complaint asked if “the airline inform(ed) the DGCA of this serious violation? If they did, what action did DGCA take and was this recorded in the list of violations in the safety audit conducted? If they did not report this, what action will DGCA take against the pilot and the airline?”

The licence of the commander has been suspended, according to DGCA.

It, however, remains to be seen if his flying licence will be cancelled too as DGCA has done in past cases, said Mohan Ranganathan, an air safety expert and member of the government-appointed Civil Aviation Safety Advisory Council. “DGCA should not stop with action against the flight safety head. A clear message has to go to all airlines that such violations will not be tolerated. A strong action against the airline is also warranted for hiding this incident,” he said.

Source:  http://www.livemint.com

Pilot's bad back may have caused crash which killed air cadet

A former RAF pilot who was teaching a 15-year-old air cadet to fly, had a rare spinal condition which may have led to both their deaths, an inquest heard.

Flight Lieutenant Michael Blee had such a stiff back he may not have been able to turn and spot a glider moments before they fatally collided in mid-air.

Schoolboy Nick Rice and Mr Blee both died when the plane they were flying in crashed into the fibreglass glider.

The pair were both killed instantly as their Grob tutor training plane nose-dived into a field as the glider pilot, Albert Freeborn, managed to eject from his engineless aircraft and escape by parachute.

An inquest into the duo's death heard how 62-year-old Mr Blee suffered from a chronic bone condition which could have made it difficult for him to raise his head and spot the glider which had been flying above his plane.

The condition, Ankylosing Spondylitis or bamboo spine, meant that the bones in his vertebrae had become fused together, limiting his mobility and potentially reducing his ability to spot other aircraft around him.

"If it affects the neck and upper part of the body it can reduce the ability to turn the head or raise the head in a nodding fashion," said Home Office Pathologist Dr Kenneth Shorrock.

He told the inquest jury in Oxford that Flt. Lieut. Blee had broken his neck during the crash, which would have killed him instantly and could have happened in the initial impact from the glider crash.

The pathologoist added that his condition would have meant his spine was less flexible than that of 15-year-old Nick, who suffered largely similar injuries as Mr Blee but had not broken his spine.

Dr Shorrock said that both Mr Blee and Nick had suffered multiple injuries in the horror crash near Drayton, Oxon., - many of which could have been responsible for their deaths.

Paramedics had raced to the scene but had been unable to access the pair until the site had been made safe, although Dr Shorrock said there would have been nothing that anyone could have done for them.

"By the time that the aircraft hit the ground there was no possibility that any medical intervention could have saved them," he said.

Nick was a pupil at the £9,060 pounds-a-year Elvian School in Reading, Berks., and had been taking part in a flying experience with Flt. Lieut. Blee along with other cadets from his school.

Glider pilot Mr Freeborn told the jury that the first he knew of the imminent crash was when he heard the roaring sound of a propeller approaching.

He soon realised that the sound was coming from underneath his own aircraft and tried his best to get out of the way of the oncoming plane.

"If you hear the sound of a propeller it's very audible and quite alarming because you know it has to be close," said Mr Freeborn, a qualified gliding instructor.

"I was travelling in a north eastern direction when I became aware of the sound of a propeller which concerned me.

"I looked left and down and I was visually aware of the plane which was very, very close beneath me."

Mr Freeborn tried to manoeuvre his glider upwards to avoid a crash but was clipped by the plane.

He managed to free himself and evacuate using a parachute, landing in a nearby field as both aircraft fell out of the sky.

Mr Freeborn, from Lee-on-Solent, Hants., said that both aircraft had been in open airspace and that there was no need for him to inform any authorities of his whereabouts.

He said that he had anticipated the skies being busy as he set off from Lasham Glider Club, near Basingstoke, Hants., but as an experienced glider pilot knew to keep a look out for anything else in the sky.

When asked if the plane's pilot would have spotted his glider had he looked up, Mr Freeborn replied: "I would have hoped so", and said that he had assumed Mr Blee, of St Mary's Green, Abingdon, had been attempting to perform a loop prior to the fatal crash.

The hearing continues.


Indonesia wants to change drug tests for pilots

JAKARTA, Indonesia - Pilots should be tested for drugs a few hours or days before they fly, rather than undergoing the routine testing every six months as they do now, Indonesia's transportation minister said Monday.

Testing them every six months may not be effective because drug users could prepare for the tests, Minister Evert Ernest Mangindaan said.

The ministry is revising regulations after the arrests of three pilots and a co-pilot from budget airliner Lion Air since September for using illicit drugs.

The arrests have raised concern over security and safety in aviation, a main mode of travel in this sprawling nation of 17,000 islands.

"Airlines should carry out strict urine tests for all their pilots few hours or days before they fly aircraft," Mangindaan said in Surabaya, where one of the pilots was arrested this month.

Lion Air pilot Syaiful Salam was arrested Feb. 4 three hours before he was to fly a plane. Authorities said he had a small amount of crystal methamphetamine, known locally as "Shabu-shabu."

Another colleague was arrested in South Sulawesi in January, and a pilot and co-pilot were caught with Shabu-shabu and ecstasy pills last September, two months before the airliner signed the biggest order ever from Boeing -- 230 planes with a list price of $21.7 billion.

Last week, a co-pilot failed a random drug test at Jakarta's airport and three others failed to show up for the testing, transportation ministry officials said, without identifying them.

Source:  http://www.businessweek.com

Russian men arrested after flight diverted to Labrador

Two men from Moscow are in custody after they allegedly interfered with the flight crew of an aircraft bound for New York City from the Russian capital on Friday.

The plane landed in Happy Valley-Goose Bay. Labrador RCMP boarded the aircraft and arrested the pair.

Sergey Yaremenkov, 42, faces charges of mischief and uttering threats under the Criminal Code, and endangering the safety and security of persons on an aircraft under the Aeronautics Act.

Nikolai Merenkov, also 42, faces one charge of mischief under the Criminal Code, and endangering the safety and security of persons on an aircraft under the Aeronautics Act.

The two men were remanded in custody over the weekend and are set to appear in provincial court at Happy Valley-Goose Bay on Monday afternoon.

Bathurst plane crash under review: No one injured when two-seater swerved into snowbank

Transport Canada is investigating after a two-seater plane crashed at the Bathurst Regional Airport on Friday about 5 p.m.

No major injuries were reported.

The pilot of the Diamond aircraft from the Moncton Flight College was practising touch-and-go techniques on the runway when the crash occurred, airport executive director Jennifer Henry stated in a news release.

The pilot told police when he applied the brakes, the aircraft swerved into a snowbank along the landing strip.

Emergency responders were on site within minutes, said Henry.

Airport staff quickly implemented the airport’s emergency procedures and contacted 911, she said.

“I am extremely proud of the airport’s staff reactions and discipline during this incident,” said Henry.

“The proper procedures and protocols were followed and executed very well. We are all very thankful that no one was hurt.”

MiG fighter jet crashes in Sri Lanka

A Russian-built MiG-27 fighter jet of Sri Lankan Air Force Monday crashed during a training exercise but there was no casualty.

Colombo - A Sri Lankan Air Force MiG 27 crashed into a coconut plantation in north-western Sri Lanka Monday, after its pilot managed to eject and landed safely, an official said.

A technical failure occurred during a training mission over the town of Dummalasuriya, 60 kilometres north of the capital, the Air Force spokesman said.

The jets, which were extensively deployed against Tamil rebels in northern Sri Lanka which ended in May 2009, are currently used by the military only for training exercises

Written Leases for Farmers on West Michigan Regional Airport Property Looms

HOLLAND, MI (WHTC) - What had been a verbal tradition for years may become a written one for the West Michigan Airport Authority. That panel is being asked today to approve drawing up leases with three separate farming entities to continue cultivating about 133 acres of West Michigan Regional Airport property, with a lease rate of 90 dollars per acre for 2012, and automatic annual increases tied to the Consumer Price Index.

Air crash inquest starts today

Flight Lieutenant Mike Blee and Cadet Nicholas Langley-Rice killed in RAF aircraft crash


An inquest is expected to begin into the deaths of a teenage air cadet and his instructor who were killed in an air crash in Oxfordshire.

Nicholas Langley-Rice, 15, was on board an RAF training aircraft when it collided in mid-air with a glider.

He died alongside RAF reservist Flight Lieutenant Mike Blee, 62, on June 14, 2009, in Drayton, Abingdon.

The two-seater Tutor plane had taken off from RAF Benson in Oxfordshire on an air experience flight with the pilot and the Combined Cadet Force cadet on board when the incident occurred.

The pilot of the glider, Henry Freeborn, from Lee-on-the-Solent in Hampshire, managed to parachute from his stricken aircraft and landed safely in fields in Sutton Courtenay, near Abingdon.

Eye witnesses said the single-engined trainer hit the ground nose first with a violent impact after spiralling out of control.

According to the Ministry of Defence website, the Tutor T Mk 1 "is used for elementary flying training by the 14 University Air Squadrons and 12 Air Experience Flights throughout the UK".

Nicholas was a cadet with the Combined Cadet Force (CCF) at Elvian School, in Bath Road, Reading, Berkshire.

Fl Lt Blee was a retired Wing Commander with 38 years of service prior to becoming a Volunteer Reserve Officer on No 6 Air Experience Flight (AEF) in 2005, where he assumed the rank of Flight Lieutenant.

The inquest will take place at Oxford Coroner's Court, Old Assizes, County Hall, New Road, Oxford.

Source:  http://www.stamfordmercury.co.uk

Passenger plane makes emergency landing at London Gatwick after cabin pressure warning light is activated

A Thomson Airways plane has been forced to make an emergency landing at London Gatwick after a cabin pressure warning light was activated.

The passenger aircraft with 188 people onboard was heading to the popular resort of Sharm el Sheik in Egypt when the warning light suddenly came on moments after taking off from Cardiff International Airport.

The TOM532 flight immediately dropped altitude to 10,000ft and circled Dover before heading to Gatwick to land.

It's believed a technical fault may have caused the light to come on.

A spokesman for Thomson Airways said that there was no loss of cabin pressure and oxygen masks were not needed.

He added: "Flight TOM532 was diverted to Gatwick Airport as a precautionary measure after a faulty cabin pressure light came on during the flight.

"The plane landed safely at 10.20am at Gatwick and all passengers were placed on another plane to continue their journey to Egypt."

In April last year a Thomson Airways Boeing 757-200, which was on its way from Bristol to Sharm el-Sheikh, was forced to make an emergency landing in Athens following a bomb threat.

Fighter jets were scrambled to escort the plane with 213 people on board to Athens International Airport.

On landing, passengers and crew were evacuated before Greek authorities carried out a search of the aircraft. No one was harmed.

Philippines - Plane overran runway at Aklan airport; 135 passengers, crew safe. Airphil Express Airbus A320-200, RP-C3227, Performing Flight 2P-969.

The Airphil Express Airbus A320 plane sits at the end of the runaway next to housing after it overshot its landing.


A plane carrying more than 140 people overshot a runway at an airport serving one of the Philippines' most popular tourist destinations, although no-one was injured, aviation officials said.

The Airphil Express Airbus A320 plane from Manila went off the runway after landing at Kalibo airport on the central island of Panay, civil aviation authority spokeswoman Floramel Joy Fongsong said.

"The plane overshot the runway by 60 metres," Fongsong said.

The Kalibo airport, which is used as a gateway to the nearby island of Boracay, was temporarily closed until the plane was towed out, she said, adding that no one was hurt in the incident.

The plane was carrying 138 passengers, including about 10 Chinese and South Korean tourists, said Airphil Express senior vice-president Freddie Herrera.

The plane, which is less than a year old, was not damaged, he added.

The cause of the incident is still being investigated, the airline and aviation authorities said.

Airphil Express, originally called Air Philippines, is a sister company of national flag-carrier Philippine Airlines, offering budget, no-frills flights.

China helicopter passes cold weather flight test

TIANJIN, Feb. 13 -- China's first independently-developed large civil helicopter, the AC313, has passed a cold weather flight test, establishing a good performance in polar region temperatures, said the producer -- China Aviation Industrial Helicopter Co. (CAIH) -- on Monday.

The flight testing period for the 13-tonne AC313 was conducted in Hulunbuir City, Inner Mongolia, starting in January, when the region experienced temperatures of minus 46 degrees Celsius.

The helicopter also set its speed record of 336 km per hour during the testing period.

The AC313 became the first China-made aircraft authorized by China's civil aviation authority in January to fly in high-altitude regions of over 4,500 meters above the sea level.

Xu Chaoliang, the chief designer of the helicopter, said the company has so far received 32 orders for it.

He said equipped with advanced instrument landing system, the helicopter can be used for disaster relief even in blizzard weather in plateau regions.

CAIH, a wholly owned subsidiary of the China Aviation Industry Corp., is expected to produce 300 helicopters annually by 2015, making it one of the major helicopter suppliers in the world.

Headquartered in Tianjin, the company is mainly engaged in the research and development, production, maintenance and sales of helicopters and other aircraft and aviation components.

Source:  http://english.peopledaily.com.cn

Mangalore: Kingfisher Officials Deny Entry to Toddler Needing Medical Treatment

Kingfisher airlines Sunday allegedly denied permission to airlift a 36-month-old toddler who was in the need of of emergency medical help thereby forcing his parents to move him by road to Bangalore.

Mangalore, Feb 13: A toddler suffering from an illness and needing advanced medical treatment at Bangalore was allegedly denied entry into a Kingfisher flight by its officials on Sunday February 12.

One-and-half-year-old Abdul Hadi, son of Ibrahim from Kasargod, was admitted to a hospital in Mangalore a few days ago for fever. Doctors who examined him recommended him to further treatment at NIMHANS in Bangalore, and also issued relevant medical documents to facilitate his treatment there.

It is said that Ibrahim also got in touch with Kingfisher Airlines and made special arrangement to fly Hadi to Bangalore. He and three others in the family including Hadi's mother were given tickets for Sunday afternoon flight.

Hadi was taken by ambulance to the airport, but just before boarding the flight, he was stopped by Kingfisher officials who demanded more documents and also refused to accept the letter by Hadi's doctor. They said that the letter had mentioned that oxygen was a 'must' for the patient, and such facility was not available with the aircraft. They requested the word 'must' to be changed to 'have' in order to be allowed entry.

No amount of persuasion helped, and the officials were firm on not letting Hadi into the flight. All efforts to contact Kingfisher Airlines official who had given the permission earlier also went in vain.

By then it was already time for take-off and Ibrahim missed the flight. Hadi was again shifted back to a hospital in Mangalore. Sources said that alternate arrangements were made to take him to Bangalore by ambulance. Kingfisher Airlines reportedly refunded the air ticket to Ibrahim.

Source: http://www.daijiworld.com