Preliminary Report: Aborted landing goes awry

Aviation International News » January 2003
January 10, 2008, 4:59 AM

CESSNA CITATION CJ2, DEXTER, MAINE, OCT. 7, 2002–At 10:23 a.m. Cessna Citation CJ2 N57EJ was substantially damaged when it ran off the runway at Dexter Regional Airport (1B0). The 58-year-old airline transport-rated pilot and one passenger were seriously injured; two other passengers received minor injuries and a small dog riding in the aircraft was killed. The aircraft departed Robertson Airport (4B8) in Plainville, Conn., at 9:30 a.m. on an IFR flight plan for the Part 91 flight.

According to the pilot, after departure from 4B8 he climbed to FL 290 as per his clearance. The flight progressed without incident, and approximately 80 mi south of 1B0 he initiated a descent while being vectored by ATC for the GPS 34 approach.

After descending through 6,000 ft msl the airplane entered VMC with approximately 10 mi visibility. At that point, approximately 10 mi from 1B0, the pilot canceled his IFR flight plan and proceeded to the airport under VFR.

The pilot told investigators that when the airplane was approximately six miles from the airport he selected approach flaps and lowered the landing gear after slowing to Vle. He entered a modified right base for Runway 34, which is 3,000 ft long and 150 ft wide. He turned on final approach approximately three miles from the runway, selected landing flaps and slowed the airplane to approximately 125 kt. He described the approach as stable with no turbulence.

The airplane touched down in the first quarter of the runway slightly above Vref and the pilot selected ground flaps and applied the brakes. He said he could feel the anti-skid pulsating through the brake pedals but the airplane did not decelerate as expected. To verify the brakes were functioning he momentarily reduced brake pedal pressure. He then reapplied the brakes and once again felt the anti-skid pulsating. He could not remember if he felt the airplane decelerate when he reapplied the brakes.

The pilot recalls becoming concerned about stopping within the remaining distance when he was approximately halfway down the runway so he elected to abort the landing. With approximately 1,500 ft of runway remaining, he said he removed his feet from the brake pedals, advanced the power levers to takeoff and raised the flaps two notches to the takeoff position. The airplane continued down the runway but did not accelerate as anticipated. The pilot’s memory regarding the aborted landing and subsequent impact was fragmented. He remembers the airplane departing the far end of the runway and hitting the ground, but he could not recall the airspeed when the airplane entered the overrun or if he reapplied the brakes after aborting the landing.

The wind reported by approach control favored Runway 16 but the pilot chose to land on Runway 34 because the tailwind component was negligible and landing on Runway 16 would require a steeper approach because of a hill north of the runway. The pilot also added that the enhanced ground proximity warning system sounded “sink rate” on final. He added it was not unusual for the “sink rate” warning to sound, which it had done in the past even when the airplane was on a VASI and descending at 500 fpm.

At the time of the accident the pilot held an ATP certificate with multi-engine land rating and type ratings in the Citation 500, CJ1 and CJ2. He also held a private pilot certificate with an airplane single-engine land rating and a first-class medical certificate dated Jan. 25, 2001. The pilot had 2,100 hr total time, with approximately 110 hr in the aircraft. He told investigators he had landed at 1B0 at least 10 times previously in his CJ1 and three times in his CJ2.

Reported weather about 30 min after accident at the Bangor (Maine) International Airport (BGR), located 24 mi southeast of the accident site, recorded the wind as seven knots at 180 deg, visibility 10 mi, ceiling 1,500 ft overcast, temperature 55 deg F and dew-point 50 deg F. Weather is not considered to be a factor.

Examination of the landing runway revealed a pair of skid marks that started 642 ft from the approach end and continued to the end of the runway 2,450 ft away. At the end of the runway the skid marks transitioned to wheel marks in the grass-covered overrun and a third mark equally spaced between the other two began. The three marks continued to a drop-off that was located at the end of the overrun and 179 ft past the runway. The drop-off transitioned to a small dirt road that ran perpendicular to the runway and was approximately 10 ft lower in elevation. Running along the north side of the road was a pipeline. The pipeline was approximately 12 in. in diameter and had scratch marks along the projected path of the airplane. The airplane came to rest approximately 300 ft past the end of the runway and partially on a 10-ft upslope that ran perpendicular to the runway.

Both main landing gear tires were in serviceable condition and inflated. The condition of the nosewheel tire could not be confirmed. The left and right flaps were set at approximately 15 deg and the flap handle was up, as was the flap indicator. The thrust attenuators were stowed and the control switch was in the auto position. The anti-skid control switch was on, the power brake accumulator was discharged and the brake fluid reservoir was full. The parking brake was off, the gear and brake emergency pneumatic accumulator was charged and the emergency brake handle was stowed.

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