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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 174684
Last updated: 31 May 2021
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Date:29-APR-1998
Time:15:50
Type:Silhouette image of generic P28A model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Piper PA-28-140 Cherokee
Owner/operator:Keith Peter Rosetti
Registration: G-AXTD
MSN: 28-26206
Fatalities:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 3
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Category:Accident
Location:Harbledown Wood, Dunkirk, Canterbury, Kent -   United Kingdom
Phase: Take off
Nature:Private
Departure airport:Harbledon Wood, Dunkirk, near Canterbury. Kent (EG11)
Destination airport:
Investigating agency: AAIB
Narrative:
Written off (damaged beyond repair) 29 April 1998 when crashed on take off from Harbledown Wood, Dunkirk, Canterbury, Kent. The pilot was seriously injured, the two passengers were slightly injured. The cause of the crash was attributed to alcohol intoxication by the pilot (he was said to be 10% over the legal limit for driving a motor vehicle). According to the following extract from the official AAIB report into the accident:

"The pilot reported that on landing after his second circuit, he decided to roll and do one further circuit. With about 800 feet of runway remaining and a residual speed of 45 mph, full power was selected, the carburettor heat was selected to cold and the flap reduced to the first stage (10). The fuel state was reported as a full right tank and half full left tank.

With about 150 feet to run to the end of the runway, the pilot noted that his airspeed was 60 to 65 mph, a shortfall of 5 to 10 mph on his desired lift-off speed, but with insufficient distance remaining to abandon the takeoff. The aircraft left the end of the runway and flew over the road such that its right wing hit one of the road lighting poles. This caused the aircraft to swing to the right and it continued across the road into the tops of the trees on the south west side of the road.

The aircraft came to rest in woodland with the nose and right wing area being severely disrupted, spilling aircraft fuel in the immediate vicinity but there was no fire. The cabin area was intact but there was some rearward movement of the right side of the instrument panel above the control yoke

The pilot was the most seriously injured of the occupants, sustaining suspected broken ribs and minor lacerations to face and hands. He was assisted from the aircraft by the two passengers, using the door on the right side of the fuselage.

A passing motorist stopped to assist and then alerted the emergency services, returning to the roadside to guide their arrival. However, by the time the emergency services arrived at the scene, the three aircraft occupants had commenced to walk through the woods away from the wreckage. They later returned to the accident scene by bus from further along the A2. They were then taken by ambulance to hospital.

At the hospital, some three hours after the accident, the pilot agreed to a Police request to allow a voluntary blood test sample to be taken. The result of this test indicated that the pilot's blood alcohol content was 88 mg per 100 ml blood. The maximum permitted for motor vehicle drivers in the UK is 80 mg per 100 ml. The CAA has taken action against this pilot."

The AAIB report confirms that the aircraft was "destroyed". As a result, the registration G-AXTD was cancelled by the CAA on 9 July 1998 as aircraft "destroyed". This accident was, according to some sources, instrumental in the descision by the local council in closing the airfrield

Sources:

1. AAIB: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/media/5488451ced915d4c0d000296/Piper_501620_03-99.pdf
2. CAA: https://cwsprduksumbraco.blob.core.windows.net/g-info/HistoricalLedger/G-AXTD.pdf
3. https://forums.flyer.co.uk/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=76963
4. G-AXTD at Harbledown Wood, Dunkirk, Canterbury, Kent 27/7/1997: https://abpic.co.uk/pictures/view/1164478
5. G-AXTD at Kidlington, Oxford (EGTK) in 1970: https://abpic.co.uk/pictures/view/1660779
6. https://www.planelogger.com/Aircraft/Registration/G-AXTD/923669
7. https://sussexhistoryforum.co.uk/index.php?topic=17353.0

Accident investigation:
cover
  
Investigating agency: AAIB
Status: Investigation completed
Duration:
Download report: Final report


Images:

Photo of G-AXTD courtesy AirHistory.net


Southend (EGMC / SEN)
17 October 1987; (c) Terry Dann

Revision history:

Date/timeContributorUpdates
19-Mar-2015 23:02 Dr. John Smith Added
24-Jun-2016 11:44 Dr.John Smith Updated [Narrative]
24-Jun-2016 12:22 Dr.John Smith Updated [Narrative]
24-Jun-2016 12:23 Dr.John Smith Updated [Narrative]
24-Jun-2016 12:23 Dr.John Smith Updated [Narrative]
20-Nov-2020 23:59 Dr. John Smith Updated [Operator, Departure airport, Source, Accident report]

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