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Accident description
Last updated: 14 December 2017
Status:Final
Date:Monday 2 December 2013
Time:20:10
Type:Silhouette image of generic SW4 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Swearingen SA227-AC Metro III
Operator:IBC Airways
Registration: N831BC
C/n / msn: AC-654B
First flight: 1986
Total airframe hrs:33888
Cycles:35698
Engines: 2 Garrett TPE331-11U-612G
Crew:Fatalities: 2 / Occupants: 2
Passengers:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 0
Total:Fatalities: 2 / Occupants: 2
Airplane damage: Destroyed
Airplane fate: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location:2 km (1.3 mls) SSW of La Alianza, Arecibo (   Puerto Rico)
Phase: En route (ENR)
Nature:Cargo
Departure airport:Santo Domingo-Las Américas José Francisco Peña Gómez Int'l Airport (SDQ/MDSD), Dominican Republic
Destination airport:San Juan-Luis Muñoz Marín International Airport (SJU/TJSJ), Puerto Rico
Flightnumber: 405
Narrative:
A Swearingen Metro cargo plane impacted terrain near La Alianza, Arecibo, Puerto Rico. Both crew members were killed.
The flight departed Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic at 19:36 on a cargo service to San Juan, Puerto Rico. Last radio contact with the flight was about 20:08 when the flight was descending from 11,000 feet to 7,000 feet. The controller then advised the crew to maintain 3,000 feet, expect the ILS approach, and proceed direct to the "TNNER" fix, and that information "Tango" was in effect. After a crewmember read back the information, there were no further transmissions from the airplane.
The airplane had descended to 8,300 feet by 20:10:08. It then made a 20-degree turn to the left, and by 20:10:13, had descended to 7,300 feet. It subsequently made a 45-degree turn to the right, and had descended to 5,500 feet by 20:10:18. There were no additional verifiable altitude positions.
Descent calculations between 20:10:08 and 20:10:13 indicated a rate of descent of about 12,000 feet per minute (fpm), and between 20:10:13 and 2010:18, over 21,000 fpm. Preliminary groundspeed calculations indicated about 290 knots.
Weather at the time was fine with a visibility of 10 miles, a few clouds at 7,000 feet, and scattered clouds at 10,000 feet.

Probable Cause:

PROBABLE CAUSE: "The flight crew's excessive elevator input during a rapid descent under night lighting conditions, which resulted in the overstress and breakup of the airplane. Contributing to the accident was an initial loss of airplane control for reasons that could not be determined because postaccident examination revealed no mechanical anomalies that would have precluded normal operation."

Accident investigation:
cover
Investigating agency: NTSB
Status: Investigation completed
Duration: 2 years and 8 months
Accident number: ERA14MA060
Download report: Summary report

Classification:

Loss of control

Sources:
» El Nuevo Dia
» NTSB


Photos

photo of Swearingen SA227-AC Metro III N831BC
Right engine
photo of Swearingen SA227-AC Metro III N831BC
Left wing
photo of Swearingen SA227-AC Metro III N831BC
Right wing
photo of Swearingen SA227-AC Metro III N831BC
photo of Swearingen SA227-AC Metro III N831BC
Upper forward fuselage layout
photo of Swearingen SA227-AC Metro III N831BC
Left engine
photo of Swearingen SA227-AC Metro III N831BC
Right engine
photo of Swearingen SA227-AC Metro III N831BC
Instrument panel
photo of Swearingen SA227-AC Metro III N831BC
Left wing
photo of Swearingen SA227-AC Metro III N831BC
Right wing
photo of Swearingen SA227-AC Metro III N831BC
Nose Landing Gear
photo of Swearingen SA227-AC Metro III N831BC
Tail with right horizontal stabilizer bent up
photo of Swearingen SA227-AC Metro III N831BC
Radar plot
photo of Swearingen SA227-AC Metro III N831BC
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Aircraft history
date registration operator remarks
December 1986 N26906 Resort Air delivered
1 October 1989 N26906 Trans States Airlines airline renamed
15 May 1991 N26906 Mesaba Air leased
5 November 1996 N26906 Merlin Express leased
12 August 1998 N26906 Yute Air Alaska leased
29 March 1999 N26906 IBC Airways bought
14 June 1999 N831BC IBC Airways re-registered
04 Oct. 2000 N831BC IBC Airways minor damage in taxi incident at Miami, FL

Map
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 Santo Domingo-Las Américas José Francisco Peña Gómez Int'l Airport to San Juan-Luis Muñoz Marín International Airport as the crow flies is 385 km (240 miles).
Accident location: Exact; as reported in the official accident report.

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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