Tuesday, September 07, 2021

Lockheed 12A Electra Junior, N25628: Incident occurred September 05, 2021 at Moses Lake Municipal Airport (W20), Washington

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Spokane, Washington

Aircraft gear collapsed on landing. 

International Air Services Inc trustee

Date: 05-SEP-21
Time: 19:30:00Z
Regis#: N25628
Aircraft Make: LOCKHEED
Aircraft Model: 12A
Event Type: INCIDENT
Highest Injury: NONE
Aircraft Missing: No
Damage: MINOR
Activity: PERSONAL
Flight Phase: LANDING (LDG)
Operation: 91

MOSES LAKE — A pilot and one passenger were able to walk after a very rough landing at the Moses Lake Municipal Airport on Sunday.

John O'Keefe, a dentist from Winthrop, was flying in from Spokane at around 12:30 p.m. Sunday in a Lockheed Model 12 Electra Junior when the right landing gear collapsed in what is called a "hard landing."

The collapse of the right landing gear sent the aircraft across the runway and into the dirt, according to Darrin Jackson, the owner of Jackson Flight Center.

"The landing gear came down, but one gear collapsed, the right gear," Jackson said. "And that pulled it horribly to the right, with the propeller striking the runway."

Jackson said he called 911 "immediately, before the aircraft even stopped."

Jackson said the incident forced the closure of the municipal airport to all air traffic for around five hours during a very busy Labor Day weekend, as the FAA investigated and cleared ground crews to move the plane.

"There are nice little divots all over the runway, like the state put in rumble strips," Jackson said. "They aren't very deep, and it's not that big a deal."

Jackson said the Electra Junior, of which roughly 130 were built in the late 1930s and early 1940s, is "known for its landing gear failures."

"We all make not-so-good landings, but usually the gear doesn't collapse," Jackson said.

Moses Lake Police Department Capt. Dave Sands said neither pilot nor passenger received "significant" injuries in the incident, and the passenger "was gone when the police arrived."

O'Keefe could not be reached for comment.

FAA Spokesman Ian Gregor confirmed the details of the incident, but said in an email Monday to the Columbia Basin Herald the agency "does not identify people involved in aircraft accidents or incidents."

According to FAA records, the aircraft is registered to Carson City, Nevada-based International Air Services, which "specializes in providing individual trust agreements to non-U.S.A. citizens to enable them to legally register their aircraft on the American Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) 'N' register."

O'Keefe owned the aircraft, built in 1940, until March 2021, when he sold it to an "anonymous UK pilot," according to a report published at the Key.Aero website.

The "anonymous UK pilot" was coming to Moses Lake for a final FAA flight check on the aircraft, Jackson said.

O'Keefe was one of seven Electra Junior owners featured in a January 2017 issue of Air & Space/Smithsonian highlighting the few surviving flying Electra Junior aircraft.

Jackson estimated the damage — bent propellers, crumpled engine cowlings, a bent nose and two broken landing gear assemblies — at around $200,000. He also said it will likely take several months to rebuild.

"Anything is rebuildable," he said.

1 comment:

  1. Video of it exists. A one bounce landing and complete recovery and then the gear collapsed- no way the gear should have collapsed but it did. New pilot checked on in a new to him airplane. Sad.