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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 72215
Last updated: 29 July 2020
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Type:Silhouette image of generic C402 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Cessna 402C
Owner/operator:Cape Air
Registration: N121PB
C/n / msn: 402C0507
Fatalities:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 7
Aircraft damage: Substantial
Location:Watertown International Airport, NY -   United States of America
Phase: Landing
Nature:Passenger - Scheduled
Departure airport:Albany, NY (ALB)
Destination airport:Watertown, NY (ART)
Investigating agency: NTSB
The pilot of the scheduled passenger flight was conducting a visual approach to runway 25 at the destination airport in marginal visual meteorological conditions. As the airplane descended to the traffic pattern, the pilot noticed the airspeed decrease from 145 knots to 85 knots. The pilot applied full power but did not observe an increase in airspeed. He elected to continue the approach and, due to weather conditions, joined the traffic pattern for runway 7. It is likely that the pilot felt pressure to complete the flight due to the deteriorating weather conditions, rather than taking time to identify and correct the anomaly or to attempt to cross-reference with other instruments. When the pilot deployed the wing flaps and extended the landing gear, he noted that the airplane felt as though it was traveling faster than its indicated airspeed. The airplane touched down approximately 1,000 feet past the runway threshold and bounced. The pilot attempted to apply brakes, but reported that the braking action was "nil" due to runway contamination. The airplane continued down the runway, departed the paved surface, and came to rest 366 feet past the runway’s end. Postaccident testing revealed that the pitot tubes were warm to the touch when the pitot heat switch was turned on. Unregulated air pressure was applied to the right pitot tube and to the left pitot line downstream of the tube. The corresponding airspeed indicators displayed needle movement with no leaks detected. Since no further examination of the pitot-static system was conducted, the cause of the airspeed anomaly could not be determined.
Probable Cause: The pilot's decision to continue the approach with a known anomaly with the left airspeed indicator. Contributing to the accident was an undetermined malfunction of the left airspeed indicator and the condition of the runway, resulting in decreased braking capability.



Revision history:

02-Feb-2010 04:23 RobertMB Added
02-Feb-2010 04:24 RobertMB Updated [Date]
02-Feb-2010 09:56 RobertMB Updated [Registration, Source]
10-Feb-2010 00:21 RobertMB Updated [Time, Registration, Cn]
21-Dec-2016 19:25 ASN Update Bot Updated [Time, Damage, Category, Investigating agency]
26-Nov-2017 15:22 ASN Update Bot Updated [Cn, Other fatalities, Departure airport, Destination airport, Source, Narrative]

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