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Last updated: 19 February 2019
Date:Thursday 2 August 2012
Type:Silhouette image of generic C500 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Cessna 500 Citation I
Operator:Airnor - Aeronaves del Noroeste
Registration: EC-IBA
C/n / msn: 500-0178
First flight: 1974
Total airframe hrs:9460
Engines: 2 Pratt & Whitney Canada JT15D-1
Crew:Fatalities: 2 / Occupants: 2
Passengers:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 0
Total:Fatalities: 2 / Occupants: 2
Aircraft damage: Destroyed
Aircraft fate: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location:1,6 km (1 mls) N of Santiago de Compostela Airport (SCQ) (   Spain)
Phase: Approach (APR)
Departure airport:Oviedo/Aviles-Asturias Airport (OVD/LEAS), Spain
Destination airport:Santiago de Compostela Airport (SCQ/LEST), Spain
A Cessna 500 Citation I corporate jet was destroyed when it crashed near Santiago de Compostela Airport (SCQ), Spain. Both pilots were killed in the accident.
They had flown a transplant organ to Porto that night and were returning to Santiago de Compostela, leaving Oviedo Airport at 05:45.
Ten minutes later, the crew contacted approach control and was then authorized to make the ILS approach to runway 17 at Santiago de Compostela. The visibility at the airport was suitable for landing. At 06:15 hours the crew contacted Tower Control and was cleared to land. Two minutes later the aircraft impacted wooded terrain, 200 meters before the VOR of Santiago, about 1 mile before the threshold of runway 17.

Probable Cause:

The ultimate cause of the accident could not be determined. In light of the hypothesis considered in the analysis, the most likely scenario is that the crew made a non-standard precision approach in manual based primarily on distances. The ILS frequency set incorrectly in the first officer's equipment and the faulty position indicated on the DME switch would have resulted in the distance being shown on the captain's HSI as corresponding to the VOR and not to the runway threshold. The crew shortened the approach maneuver and proceeded to a point by which the aircraft should already have been established on the localizer, thus increasing the crew's workload. The crew then probably lost visual contact with the ground when the aircraft entered a fog bank in the valleys near the airport and did not realize they were making an approach to the VOR and not to the runway.
The contributing factors were:
- The lack of operational procedures of an aircraft authorized to be operated by a single pilot operated by a crew with two members.
- The overall condition of the aircraft and the instruments and the crew's mistrust of the onboard instruments.
- The fatigue built up over the course of working at a time when they should have been sleeping after an unplanned duty period.
- The concern with having to divert to the alternate without sufficient fuel combined with the complacency arising from finally reaching their destination.

Accident investigation:
Investigating agency: CIAIAC
Status: Investigation completed
Duration: 2 years and 11 months
Accident number: A-029/2012
Download report: Final report

Cause undetermined
Controlled Flight Into Terrain (CFIT) - Ground

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METAR Weather report:
04:30 UTC / 06:30 local time:
LEST 020430Z 00000KT 5000 R17/0450V1700U BR FEW006 13/13 Q1019 NOSIG
04:30 UTC: Winds calm; Visibility: 5000 m; mist, few clouds at 600 feet AGL; Runway Visual Range along Runway 17 is varying between 450 m and 1700 m and is improving; Temperature and Dew point: 13°C; Pressure: 1019 mb

Follow-up / safety actions

CIAIAC issued 6 Safety Recommendations

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photo of Cessna 500 Citation I EC-IBA
photo of Cessna 500 Citation I EC-IBA
photo of Cessna 500 Citation I EC-IBA
photo of Cessna 500 Citation I EC-IBA
photo of Cessna 500 Citation I EC-IBA
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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 Oviedo/Aviles-Asturias Airport to Santiago de Compostela Airport as the crow flies is 205 km (128 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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