Posted on March 23rd, 2011
The pilot’s decision to attempt a go-around late in the landing roll with insufficient runway remaining caused the fatal crash of a Hawker 800A in July 2008 at Owatonna (Minn.) Degner Regional Airport, according to an NTSB final report issued last week. The two crewmembers and six passengers aboard perished in the accident, and the aircraft (N818MV) was destroyed. It was being operated by Allentown, Pa.-based East Coast Jets as a Part 135 nonscheduled flight from Atlantic City, N.J., to Owatonna. As the crew attempted to land at around 9:45 a.m., the pilot performed a late go-around and the jet rolled beyond the end of the 5,500-foot runway and became airborne before it struck the airport’s eight-foot-high localizer antenna with its right wing. The twinjet cartwheeled and came to rest in a cornfield, leaving a debris trail half a mile long. Investigators found that the pilot failed to deploy the Hawker’s lift-dump system immediately after touchdown, which compromised the airplane’s ability to decelerate. Investigators also speculated that both pilots’ performance was likely impaired by fatigue that resulted from their significant sleep loss, early start time and possible untreated sleep disorders. Contributing factors were the pilots’ poor crew coordination, lack of cockpit discipline and the failure of the FAA to require crew resource management training and standard operating procedures for Part 135 operators.