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Last updated: 12 November 2019
Status:Final
Date:Thursday 25 March 1965
Type:Silhouette image of generic DC3 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Douglas Dakota 4 (DC-3)
Operator:BKS Air Transport
Registration: G-AMSH
C/n / msn: 33331/16583
First flight: 1945
Crew:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 3
Passengers:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 0
Total:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 3
Aircraft damage: Substantial
Aircraft fate: Repaired
Location:2,4 km (1.5 mls) Leeds/Bradford Airport (LBA) (   United Kingdom)
Phase: Approach (APR)
Nature:Ferry/positioning
Departure airport:Edinburgh-Turnhouse Airport (EDI/EGPH), United Kingdom
Destination airport:Leeds/Bradford Airport (LBA/EGNM), United Kingdom
Narrative:
When the aircraft arrived in the vicinity of Leeds/Bradford Airport, after a night positioning flight from Edinburgh, the following aerodrome weather report was passed to it: Wind velocity 150/20 kts., frequently gusting to 30 knots; visibility 4 km but expected to be very much reduced on final approach; weather, heavy driving rain and sleet; cloud, 6/8 at 600 ft (main base at 1,500 ft). On being informed that runway 15 would remain restricted (as a result of an accident to another aircraft) for the remainder of the night, the captain requested a radar approach to runway 19. There is a significant up-gradient on this runway in the 19 direction.
During the approach, heavy showers or rain and sleet were encountered, with reduced visibility. At a height of about 650 ft the runway lights were reported, dead ahead, by the first officer. Shortly after this the captain identified the runway lights but not the angle of approach lights. He then switched on the landing lights; this caused considerable glare which appreciably reduced forward visibility. When the first officer noticed treetops and snow patches in the light of the landing lights he called "trees" and attempted to apply up-elevator. Shortly after this the aircraft struck the tops of trees 1.3 nm short of the runway and 175 ft. above the touch-down elevation. The impact broke off the port engine main oil filter and caused extensive damage to the underside of the wing, fuselage and tailplane. Overshoot action was initiated but the port engine had failed as a result of the damage it had sustained, and the captain decided to continue the approach. The aircraft landed safely on the runway without further damage.

Probable Cause:

Opinion: The captain allowed the aircraft to descend below a safe approach path during an approach to land at night in poor weather conditions with the result that it struck tree-tops. The misjudment of height resulted from difficulties of transition from instrument to visual flight and inadequate visual approach slope guidance, and was possibly aggravated by the effects of down-draughts.

Classification:

Forced landing on runway

Sources:
» Accidents to Aircraft - A United Kingdom Survey for the year ended 31st December 1965


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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 Edinburgh-Turnhouse Airport to Leeds/Bradford Airport as the crow flies is 254 km (159 miles).
Accident location: Approximate; accuracy within a few kilometers.

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