Aer Caribe AN26 at Otu on Jul 9th 2014, nose gear collapse and runway excursion
Last Update: April 22, 2016 / 00:04:39 GMT/Zulu time
GRIAA had initially reported the aircraft was on approach to Otu when the crew was not able to extend the nose gear. All attempts to lower the nose gear failed forcing the crew to perform a nose gear up landing. The aircraft touched down safely but subsequently veered left off the runway and came to a stop with the left hand main gear on soft ground.
No weather data are available.
Uto features a runway 17/35 of 950 meters/3100 feet length.
Due to a misleading date "07/06/2014" (which actually identifies Jun 7th, not Jul 6th) provided by GRIAA The Aviation Herald initially mistook and merged two occurrences into one, see Incident: Aer Caribe AN26 at San Jose del Gua on Jun 7th 2014, runway excursion during rejected takeoff.
The GRIAA released their final report in Spanish concluding the probable causes of the accident were:
Improper handling of the flight controls by the pilot in the landing phase resulting in an abrupt change of pitch angle and a pitching moment that pushed the nose gear against the ground causing the nose gear locking mechanism to dislodge.
Contributing factors were:
The payload of 4000kg, maximum weight for the runway in use, created a condition that caused more linear momentum and increased brakes forces needed.
The short runway, 892 meters long, required the immediate application of brakes and reversers. In addition houses and trees near the runway end (runway 17 threshold) reduced safety margins in case of a runway overrun.
The captain (31, ATPL, 5,284 hours total, 1,423 hours on type) was pilot flying, the first officer (25, CPL, 2,408 hours total, 1,223 hours on type) was pilot monitoring.
According to the flight data recorder the flaps were set to 38 degrees for the landing, all gear indicated down and locked. The main gear touched down within the touch down zone runway 35 followed by the nose gear, the nose gear however progressively retracted as the aircraft moved forward. The maximum vertical acceleration was +2.21G.
The GRIAA analysed that the aircraft had been satisfactorily repaired after its prior incident.
The GRIAA analysed that a number of "sink rate" and "pull up" EGPWS occurred during the final approach. However, the activation of these alarms may have been caused by the execution of the approach outside normal parameters considering the geographic and operational conditions of the aerodrome. In particular, the short and narrow runway (893 meters length, 12 meters width) surrounded by mountaineous terrain and obstacles requires increased concentration and coordination of final approach and landing, also requiring higher speeds and glide path angles. As result the crew performed an "unstabilized" visual approach (corroborated by the EGPWS warnings). After main gear touchdown there was a nose down control input which accelerated the nose gear down onto the runway.
This article is published under license from Avherald.com. © of text by Avherald.com.
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