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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 33781
Last updated: 13 September 2021
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Type:Silhouette image of generic C150 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Cessna FRA150L Aerobat (Reims)
Owner/operator:The Belfast Flying Club Ltd
Registration: G-BANE
MSN: 150-0180
Fatalities:Fatalities: 1 / Occupants: 1
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location:Near Ardglass, County Down, Northern Ireland -   United Kingdom
Phase: En route
Departure airport:Belfast International Airport Aldergrove (BFS/EGAA)
Destination airport:Belfast City Airport, Sydenham (BHD/EGAC)
Investigating agency: AAIB
Written off (destroyed) 28-8-1998 when crashed near Ardglass, County Down, Northern Ireland, killing the pilot (the sole person on board). According to the following extract from the official AAIB report into the accident:

"The pilot had planned to conduct a VFR flight in the south coastal area of County Down, to the south east of Belfast International airport. The forecast meteorological conditions for the flight were good. Prior to departure the pilot arranged for the aircraft to be refuelled, each tank had a capacity of 145 imperial gallons (66 litres). He uplifted 40 litres of fuel and the refueller noted that each tank was filled to within about 2 inches of the top of each tank. Allowing for any unusable fuel this would have been sufficient for approximately 4 hours of general flying.

The aircraft was cleared to take off from Belfast International airport at 09:20 hours and was handed over to the approach controller for a visual departure to the south east. At 09:27 hours the pilot contacted the approach controller at Belfast (City) airport since his intended route would take him across the extended centre line of their in use runway. He confirmed that he was at 1,000 feet, VFR and routing to the south where he intended to operate for about 30 minutes, he was asked to report when at the coast.

At 09:47 hours the pilot reported that he was now in the area of Bishops Court (a disused airfield) and confirmed his intention to operate in that area for about 30 minutes whilst remaining below 2,000 feet. At 10:20 hours another light aircraft contacted Belfast (City) approach to say that it was operating in the same area at 1,800 feet and the pilots were informed of the presence of G-BANE.

The pilot of G-BANE then called to say that he had heard the previous transmission and was looking for the other traffic. There were no further radio calls from the pilot on either the frequency in use or on the emergency frequency of 1215 MHz.

Two separate eye witnesses saw a white, high wing aircraft that appeared to conducting a normal stalling exercise; the description of the aircraft matched that of G-BANE. One described the aircraft diving briefly towards the ground before climbing away, the other described the nose appearing to fall, the engine revving up and the aircraft climbing away. Both witnesses saw the aircraft complete this manoeuvre twice before flying away, in controlled flight, towards Bishops Court.

Later, another eye witness saw an aircraft spiralling down at a low altitude. He heard the engine clearly and was sure that there was no smoke or fire from the aircraft whilst in flight. He saw the aircraft hit the ground nose first still in a spiral. Another witness heard the engine noise of an aircraft which was flying low over her house. She looked out of a window and saw the aircraft heading towards the ground. It appeared to be in a dive with the wings level and then went out of sight behind some trees still going down".

The AAIB report refers to a post-mortem toxicology report, which indicates that traces of prescription medications were found in the pilots body. The medication may have affected the pilots ability to fly, and there were indications that, after taking this drug, users should not drive or operate machinery.

The AAIB report also notes that G-BANE was "destroyed"; as a result, the registration was cancelled by the CAA on 26-11-1998 as "destroyed"


1. AAIB:
2. CAA;

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

Revision history:

27-Sep-2008 01:00 ASN archive Added
16-Sep-2011 07:57 Uli Elch Updated [Aircraft type, Location, Phase, Nature, Source, Damage, Narrative]
26-Mar-2015 16:27 Dr. John Smith Updated [Date, Time, Aircraft type, Registration, Cn, Operator, Total fatalities, Total occupants, Other fatalities, Location, Country, Phase, Nature, Departure airport, Destination airport, Source, Narrative]
27-Jan-2016 15:07 Dr.John Smith Updated [Damage]
28-Jun-2016 17:12 Dr.John Smith Updated [Time, Cn, Source, Narrative]

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