ASN Aircraft accident Fairchild SA227-AC Metro III N2721M Elko Airport, NV (EKO)
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Status:Accident investigation report completed and information captured
Date:Monday 15 January 1990
Type:Silhouette image of generic SW4 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Fairchild SA227-AC Metro III
Operator:SkyWest Airlines
Registration: N2721M
MSN: AC-716
First flight: 1988
Total airframe hrs:2928
Engines: 2 Garrett TPE331
Crew:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 2
Passengers:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 14
Total:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 16
Aircraft damage: Substantial
Aircraft fate: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location:6,6 km (4.1 mls) ENE of Elko Airport, NV (EKO) (   United States of America)
Phase: Approach (APR)
Nature:Domestic Scheduled Passenger
Departure airport:Salt Lake City International Airport, UT (SLC/KSLC), United States of America
Destination airport:Elko Airport, NV (EKO/KEKO), United States of America
The Metro III passenger plane operated on a scheduled flight from Salt Lake City International Airport, UT (SLC) to Elko Airport, NV (EKO).
During arrival, the flight crew of SkyWest Airlines flight 5855 requested a VOR/DME-B approach to runway 23 at the Elko Airport, which was approved. As the approach continued, the flight crew reported over the Bullion VOR. Approximately 30 seconds later, the aircraft impacted the top of a mountain, about 100 feet before reaching the VOR station. The airplane sustained substantial damage and four occupants sustained serious injuries.
Elevation of the crash site was about 6460 ft. The minimum published crossing altitude at the VOR was 7000 ft. The airport was 4.1 miles from the VOR at an elevation of 5135 feet.
Weather at the time of the approach was poor with low clouds.

Probable Cause:

PROBABLE CAUSE: "Improper IFR procedure by the captain, and inadequate monitoring of the approach by the first officer, which resulted in a failure to maintain proper altitude during the approach. Factors related to the accident were: the terrain and weather conditions at the accident site. "

Accident investigation:

Investigating agency: NTSB
Status: Investigation completed
Duration: 1 year and 8 months
Accident number: DEN90FA042
Download report: Summary report

Controlled Flight Into Terrain (CFIT) - Mountain

» ICAO Adrep Summary 2/91 (#11)


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This map shows the airport of departure and the intended destination of the flight. The line between the airports does not display the exact flight path.
Distance from Salt Lake City International Airport, UT to Elko Airport, NV as the crow flies is 319 km (199 miles).
Accident location: Approximate; accuracy within a few kilometers.

This information is not presented as the Flight Safety Foundation or the Aviation Safety Network’s opinion as to the cause of the accident. It is preliminary and is based on the facts as they are known at this time.
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