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Last updated: 20 June 2019
Status:Final
Date:Friday 19 March 1999
Time:09:45
Type:Silhouette image of generic DHC6 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
de Havilland Canada DHC-6 Twin Otter 300
Operator:Provincial Airlines
Registration: C-FWLQ
C/n / msn: 724
First flight: 1980
Total airframe hrs:30490
Engines: 2 Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6A-27
Crew:Fatalities: 1 / Occupants: 2
Passengers:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 0
Total:Fatalities: 1 / Occupants: 2
Aircraft damage: Damaged beyond repair
Location:3,7 km (2.3 mls) from Davis Inlet Airport, NL (YDI) (   Canada)
Phase: Approach (APR)
Nature:Cargo
Departure airport:Goose Bay Airport, NL (YYR/CYYR), Canada
Destination airport:Davis Inlet Airport, NL (YDI), Canada
Flightnumber: 960
Narrative:
Flight 960 operated under a defense visual flight rules flight plan and departed Goose Bay for Davis Inlet at 08:15 AST. During the first approach, the first officer had occasional visual glimpses of the snow on the surface. The captain descended the aircraft to the minimum descent altitude (MDA) of 1340 feet asl. When the crew did not acquire the required visual references at the missed approach point, they executed a missed approach. On the second approach, the captain flew outbound from the beacon at 3000 feet asl until turning on the inbound track. It was decided that if visual contact of the surface was made at any time during the approach procedure, they would continue below the MDA in anticipation of the required visual references. The captain initiated a constant descent at approximately 1500 feet per minute with 10 degrees flap selected. The FO occasionally caught glimpses of the surface. At MDA, in whiteout conditions, the captain continued the descent. In the final stages of the descent, the FO acquired visual ground contact; 16 seconds before impact, the captain also acquired visual ground contact. At 8 seconds before impact, the crew selected maximum propeller revolutions per minute. The aircraft struck the ice in controlled flight two nm from the airport. The aircraft was destroyed with wing and partial fuselage separation, and other incursion damage. The tail section where the ELT was mounted was badly damaged. Aircraft parts and cargo were scattered over the ice. The co-pilot was found approximately 20 feet from the main wreckage. He had expired before searchers reached the scene. The pilot was located in the rear of the aircraft, apparently thrown there during the crash sequence. He was semi-conscious with serious injuries. There was no fire.

Probable Cause:

Findings as to Causes and Contributing Factors: "1) The captain decided to descend below the minimum descent altitude (MDA) without the required visual references; 2) After descending below MDA, both pilots were preoccupied with acquiring and maintaining visual contact with the ground and did not adequately monitor the flight instruments; thus, the aircraft flew into the ice."

Accident investigation:
cover
Investigating agency: TSB Canada
Status: Investigation completed
Duration: 2 years and 2 months
Accident number: A99A0036
Download report: Final report

Classification:
Low visibility
Controlled Flight Into Terrain (CFIT) - Ground

Follow-up / safety actions
After the accident, Transport Canada (TC) conducted a regulatory audit of the operator and increased the frequency of in-flight checks and general inspection of the Goose Bay operation.

TSB issued 1 Safety Recommendation

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Photos

photo of DHC-6-Twin-Otter-300-N914MA
accident date: 19-03-1999
type: de Havilland Canada DHC-6 Twin Otter 300
registration: N914MA
 

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 Goose Bay Airport, NL to Davis Inlet Airport, NL as the crow flies is 286 km (179 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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