ASN Aircraft accident McDonnell Douglas DC 10-10 N450AX Tehachapi, CA
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Status:Accident investigation report completed and information captured
Date:Monday 25 June 2007
Type:Silhouette image of generic DC10 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
McDonnell Douglas DC 10-10
Operated by:10 Tanker Air Carrier
On behalf of:California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection
Registration: N450AX
MSN: 46942/162
First flight: 1974
Engines: 3 General Electric CF6-6K
Crew:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 3
Passengers:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 0
Total:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 3
Aircraft damage: Substantial
Aircraft fate: Repaired
Location:19 km (11.9 mls) SW of Tehachapi, CA (   United States of America)
Phase: Maneuvering (MNV)
Nature:Fire fighting
Departure airport:Victorville-Southern California Logistics Airport, CA (VCV/KVCV), United States of America
Destination airport:Victorville-Southern California Logistics Airport, CA (VCV/KVCV), United States of America
A McDonnell Douglas DC-10-10, N450AX (Tanker 910), impacted trees with the left wing during a fire suppression flight in support of the White Fire about 12 miles southwest of Tehachapi, California. The airplane was owned by BC Aircraft Leasing LLC, and leased to 10 Tanker Air Carrier, LLC. The California Department of Forestry and Fire Prevention (Cal Fire) was operating the airplane as a public use flight. The captain, first officer (FO), and flight engineer (FE), were not injured. The airplane was substantially damaged. The airplane departed Victorville-Southern California Logistics Airport, California, at 16:57.
According to Cal Fire personnel, the flight crew was preparing to jettison a load of retardant. While turning on final for the drop, the left wing impacted several trees. The flight crew climbed the airplane to 11,000 feet where they jettisoned the fire retardant. Then, they landed uneventfully at their departure airport at 17:48.
Thirteen impacted trees were identified by Cal Fire personnel. The first identified tree that sustained impact was 45 feet tall at a base elevation of 7,786 feet mean sea level (msl).

Probable Cause:

PROBABLE CAUSE: "The captain's failure to maintain clearance from trees."

Accident investigation:

Investigating agency: NTSB
Status: Investigation completed
Duration: 1 year and 2 months
Accident number: SEA07TA181
Download report: Summary report


Forced landing on runway

» NTSB id 20070703X00873


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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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