Jetgo E135 at Middlemount on Aug 8th 2017, collided with runway threshold lights
Last Update: December 6, 2017 / 16:49:08 GMT/Zulu time
Australia's TSB reported however, that a runway inspection after the landing revealed two runway edge lights were damaged and there was evidence the aircraft had touched down ahead of the runway threshold. The captain was notified, an inspection of the aircraft was performed before it departed Middlemount again with no damage found. The ATSB rated the occurrence a serious incident and opened an investigation.
The aircraft remained on the ground in Middlemount for about 3 hours, then returned to Brisbane.
On Dec 6th 2017 the ATSB released their final report concluding the probable causes of the serious incident were:
- The aircraft descended below the desired approach path and landed prior to the selected aim point. Prior to landing, the aircraft collided with two runway threshold lights.
- A flight involving a captain under line training, with high workload during final approach associated with the line training, along with the absence of approach slope guidance, resulted in the flight crew not detecting that the aircraft had descended below the desired approach path.
The ATSB reported the crew consisted of a captain under line training and a training captain, the captain under line training was pilot flying (PF), the training captain was pilot monitoring (PM). The crew had flown a visual circuit and extended the downwind leg to permit the PF familiarize with the terrain and a number of masts near the runway. On final approach the PM noticed they were low on approach but determined he did not need to intervene. The aircraft touched down seemingly without any incident. The aircraft made a second rotation into Middlemount also without incident. The airport operator annotated that he observed the second arrival and the aircraft touched down within the normal landing zone.
In the evening a runway inspection revealed that two runway threshold lights were damaged and there were fresh tyre marks starting about 4 meters past the threshold lights. An engineering inspection of the aircraft revealed no damage.
The ATSB annotated that Middlemount is the only airport without visual approach slope guidance (PAPI/VASI) in Australia regulary used for scheduled flights.
The ATSB reported the FDR data for the first approach and landing were in line with the tyre marks seen on the runway 4 meters past the threshold.
The ATSB analysed:
During final approach the aircraft descended below the final approach path, and the aircraft landed prior to the selected aim point. Prior to landing, the main landing gear tyres collided with two runway threshold lights.
This was the captain under training’s first approach without visual slope guidance in a jet aircraft. Combined with the demand of operating a new aircraft under new operating procedures, resulted in a high workload for the pilot under training during the approach. The training captain also experienced a high workload due to the demands of acting in the pilot monitoring role and monitoring the captain under training.
The high workload of the flight crew during the approach, along with the absence of approach slope guidance, likely reduced the flight crew’s ability to detect the flight path deviation.
This article is published under license from Avherald.com. © of text by Avherald.com.
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