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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 188254
Last updated: 24 November 2020
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Date:22-SEP-1997
Time:12:30
Type:Silhouette image of generic SPIT model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Viking Spitfire Prototype Replica
Owner/operator:Replica Spitfire Ltd
Registration: G-BRDV
C/n / msn: HD36/001
Fatalities:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 1
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Substantial
Category:Accident
Location:Keevil Airfield, Trowbridge, Wiltshire -   United Kingdom
Phase: Landing
Nature:Test
Departure airport:Keevil Airfield, Steeple Ashton, Trowbridge, Wiltshire
Destination airport:Keevil Airfield, Steeple Ashton, Trowbridge, Wiltshire
Investigating agency: AAIB
Narrative:
Substantially damaged 22-9-1997 when force landed at Keevil Airfield, Spiers Piece, Steeple Ashton, Trowbridge, Wiltshire at the end of a test flight. The pilot (the sole person on bard) was not injured. According to the following excerpt from the official AAIB report into the accident:

" The aircraft was a full size wooden replica based on the prototype Supermarine Spitfire and it carried the markings orginally applied to that aircraft, K5054. It was much lighter than an original Spitfire, with a basic weight of under 3,000 lb. The aircraft was powered by a Jaguar V12 motor car engine, which had been extensively modified to increase the capacity and was fitted with a 2.77:1 reduction gearbox driving a Hamilton Standard Hydromatic two bladed constant speed propeller.

Although the normal Electronic Control Unit (ECU) for the engine was retained, the installation was modified by the addition of dual ignition, dual fuel pumps, and a variable mixture control. It had not been flown for several years, as the C of A had expired on 18-2-1995, and had been sold on to a new owner. However, before he could fly the aircraft, it was necessary for a Permit to Fly renewal flight to be undertaken. This was the purpose of the accident flight, and the aircraft was being flown by a CAA test pilot when the accident occurred.

Following the engine start, the aircraft was taxied to the hold where lengthy power checks were made. From the video taken of the flight, it appeared that at times during these power checks the engine sounded rather uneven. However, during the take off the engine had accelerated normally and the aircraft climbed away satisfactorily. It was then lost from the video coverage for a few minutes while the pilot familiarised himself with the aircraft, and conducted his checks.

When the aircraft appeared again on video, it was on final approach, with the landing gear down, and the flaps retracted. There is some doubt about the intention of this approach; the pilot stated that he had intended to go-around from this first approach, and that he had discussed this beforehand, but the builder thought that he was landing.

There had also been some discussion over the R/T between the pilot and the builder about the oil and coolant temperatures, which the pilot thought were high, but which the builder advised were allowable.

From the video, the aircraft was observed to cross the threshold, and power was then reduced. However, at about the point where the flare would have been initiated, the power was again increased.The engine accelerated normally at first, but then began to run roughly. The aircraft was seen to continue down the runway at a very low height.

After about 20 seconds, the landing gear was retracted, but the aircraft continued, without climbing, for a further 15 seconds until it disappeared from view, some 35 seconds after power had been applied, still low and apparently on
the runway heading. Shortly after this, the pilot reduced power and made a forced landing in a field beyond the runway.

The damage to the aircraft was considerable, and some difficulty was encountered in opening the cockpit door due to distortion of the fuselage. However the pilot was uninjured, and the aircraft was later recovered to a hangar."

Damage sustained to airframe: Per the AAIB report "Damage to propeller, underside of aircraft and fuselage structure". The damaged airframe was repaired for static display; first at the Solent Sky Museum in Southampton, moving on by December 2012 to the Kent Battle of Britain Museum in Hawkinge

Sources:

1. AAIB: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/media/5422f5e640f0b613460005fd/dft_avsafety_pdf_501599.pdf
2. CAA: https://siteapps.caa.co.uk/g-info/rk=BRDV
3. https://www.flickr.com/photos/wickenden1967/6200744131
4. http://www.airport-data.com/aircraft/photo/000111538L.html

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


Related books:

Revision history:

Date/timeContributorUpdates
19-Jun-2016 22:15 Dr.John Smith Added
19-Jun-2016 22:18 Dr.John Smith Updated [Narrative]
13-Feb-2017 12:50 TB Updated [Location]

Corrections or additions? ... Edit this accident description