Narrative:A Boeing 737-200, registered YV102T, was destroyed when it flew into terrain while on approach to Latacunga Airport, Ecuador All three on board were killed.
The airplane, owned by Venezuelan airline Conviasa had been stored for a while at Caracas-Simón Bolívar International Airport (CCS), Venezuela. It was being ferried to Latacunga, reportedly underway to a new owner.
En route the crew prepared for an ILS approach to runway 18 as published in arrival procedure 'Descenso 5'.
The flight was in contact with Latacunga when they were cleared to descend to FL180. At that moment, 20:51 local time, they were twenty miles out. The controller asked the crew to report at ten miles out for further clearance down to FL150. He also indicated that the crew could expect a 'Descenso 4' arrival for runway 18.
At 20:53 the control tower requested DME distance information, and the crew reported that they were about 12 miles out. The controller cleared them down to FL150. Two minutes later the flight reported overhead the LTV VOR. The controller instructed the flight to carry out the procedure turn while descending to FL130. While manoeuvring for the procedure turn the flight strayed outside protected airspace over mountainous terrain. The GPWS sounded for 22 seconds and the crew attempted to stay clear from terrain, but the airplane flew into the side of the Iliniza Volcano at an elevation of 13100 feet.
PROBABLE CAUSE: (translated from official Spanish report)
The Accident Investigation Board believes that the probable cause of this accident was non-compliance by the crew of the technical procedures, configuration, speed and bank angle of the aircraft required for the completion of the initial turn of the Instrument Approach Procedure Nr.4 published in the AIP Ecuador, to Latacunga airport, a failure that placed the aircraft outside of the protected area (published pattern), leading to high elevation mountainous terrain.
- Ignorance of the crew of the area which was under the approach path.
- Lack of documentation and procedures of the airline that govern the conduct of flights to non-scheduled and special airports.
Controlled Flight Into Terrain (CFIT) - Mountain
» Avión venezolano que desapareció con tres personas fue localizado en Ecuador (AFP, 31-8-2008)
Approach procedure Descenso 4 for Latacaunga Airport
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 Caracas-Simón Bolívar International Airport to Latacunga-Cotopaxi International Airport as the crow flies is 1805 km (1128 miles).