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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 44216
Last updated: 19 April 2019
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Date:25-JAN-2006
Time:12:50
Type:Silhouette image of generic L39 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Aero Vodochody L-39MS
Owner/operator:Air USA Inc.
Registration: N104XX
C/n / msn: 040004
Fatalities:Fatalities: 1 / Occupants: 1
Aircraft damage: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Category:Accident
Location:Ketchikan, AK -   United States of America
Phase: Approach
Nature:Ferry/positioning
Departure airport:Sitka, AK (PASI)
Destination airport:Ketchikan, AK (PAKT)
Investigating agency: NTSB
Narrative:
The airline transport certificated pilot was on a Title 14, CFR Part 91 ferry flight in a military jet surplus warbird when the airplane collided with water and a residential area during an instrument approach to land. During the circle-to-land contact approach, the pilot was advised by an FAA flight service station specialist at the island airport that the weather did not look favorable for a contact approach due to low clouds and visibility. A pilot-rated witness on the shore across from the island reported seeing the airplane descend from the clouds and strike the ocean three times before it climbed out of sight. The witness described the visibility as about 3/4 mile in blowing snow. The airplane continued to fly for approximately 2.3 miles, until other witnesses near a town on the shore heard the engine stop, and saw the jet and a parachute at a low altitude. The airplane collided with the ground in a large lot, and continued into an occupied trailer home and parked vehicles. A postcrash fire ensued. Inspection of the airplane disclosed no preimpact mechanical problems with the airplane. The loss of engine power was consistent with the water impact which damaged the inlet fan and compressor stator. The circle-to-land minimum descent altitude for aircraft with a 120 knot approach speed is 2,500 feet msl, and requires 3 miles visibility. Prior to impact, the pilot attempted to eject from the airplane at a low altitude. The ejection was unsuccessful, and the pilot struck a tree while still in the ejection seat. Inspection of the ejection apparatus disclosed no evidence of any preimpact malfunction.
Probable Cause: The pilot's failure to follow published instrument landing procedures and his descent below approach minimums during an IFR circle to land approach, which resulted in the airplane striking the ocean and a loss of engine power. Factors contributing to the accident were low clouds and snow.

Sources:

NTSB: https://www.ntsb.gov/_layouts/ntsb.aviation/brief.aspx?ev_id=20060202X00153&key=1
FAA register: 2. http://registry.faa.gov/aircraftinquiry/NNum_Results.aspx?NNumbertxt=104XX


Revision history:

Date/timeContributorUpdates
28-Oct-2008 00:45 ASN archive Added
02-Dec-2014 21:29 Dr. John Smith Updated [Time, Source, Narrative]
21-Dec-2016 19:24 ASN Update Bot Updated [Time, Damage, Category, Investigating agency]
05-Dec-2017 09:01 ASN Update Bot Updated [Operator, Total occupants, Other fatalities, Source, Narrative]

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