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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 170158
Last updated: 5 July 2019
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Type:Silhouette image of generic SREY model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Progressive Aerodyne Searey
Owner/operator:Fly Away Inc
Registration: N89KD
C/n / msn: 1LK588C
Fatalities:Fatalities: 2 / Occupants: 2
Aircraft damage: Substantial
Location:SE of Buffalo-Lancaster Regional Airport (KBQR), Lancaster, NY -   United States of America
Phase: En route
Departure airport:Lancaster, NY (BQR)
Destination airport:Lancaster, NY (BQR)
Investigating agency: NTSB
The accident airplanes, a Cessna and an experimental amateur-built Searey, were two of several airplanes participating in a volunteer event designed to provide the opportunity for young people to fly in a general aviation airplane. A route of flight for the event was established and briefed, and the pilots were instructed to make position reports over the airport’s common traffic advisory frequency at certain landmarks along the route of flight; however, no procedures were in place to account for the disparate operating characteristics and speeds of the aircraft participating in the event. Radar and GPS data showed that the Cessna overtook and descended to the altitude of the Searey as the Searey climbed slowly. During the last moments before impact, both airplanes were depicted at the same altitude and in close lateral proximity. The Searey pilot was unaware that his airplane had collided with the Cessna, but upon experiencing control difficulty, performed a forced landing to an area of thick vegetation. The Searey was substantially damaged during the landing. Immediately after the collision, the Cessna entered a descending spiral to ground contact.
A performance radar and cockpit visibility study determined that the Searey would have remained a relatively small and stationary object in the Cessna’s windscreen, appearing below the horizon and just above the engine cowling, for several minutes before the impact. The study also determined that the Searey may have been difficult to distinguish against the background of terrain. Additionally, since the airplanes were on a converging course, the Searey would have presented little relative motion to the other pilot, making detection more difficult. The Cessna would not have been visible to the Searey pilot because it approached from an area that was obstructed by the airplane’s structure.

Probable Cause: The pilot’s failure to maintain an adequate visual lookout for known traffic in the fly-in event traffic pattern, which resulted in a midair collision.


FAA register:

Revision history:

27-Sep-2014 18:41 harro Added
29-Sep-2014 01:01 Geno Updated [Aircraft type, Registration, Cn, Operator, Phase, Nature, Departure airport, Destination airport, Source, Narrative]
29-Sep-2014 01:09 Geno Updated [Time, Source, Damage]
21-Dec-2016 19:28 ASN Update Bot Updated [Time, Damage, Category, Investigating agency]
30-Nov-2017 19:11 ASN Update Bot Updated [Total fatalities, Other fatalities, Nature, Departure airport, Destination airport, Source, Narrative]

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