Pilot and his student escape injury in crash

A hard landing during a training flight saw a light aircraft stranded on a river bank after part of the landing gear collapsed.

An Ikarus C42 similar to the type involved in the crash.
An Ikarus C42 similar to the type involved in the crash.

The 63-year-old instructing pilot and his student escaped injury during the incident, near Tandragee, which happened on March 23 this year.

It happened after the student appeared to be having difficulty with a landing manoeuvre and the instructing pilot, with 1,600 hours of experience, took over to demonstrate.

The incident was reported in this month’s edition of the Air Accident Investigation Branch bulletin.

The bulletin reported, “During a training flight to practice circuits, the instructor reported that the student pilot was having difficulty with rounding out and holding off during landing. He considered that the presence of a slight crosswind may have contributed to the student’s difficulties.

“The instructor decided to demonstrate the correct procedure so that the student could get the correct visual ‘picture’. As the instructor was holding off, the aircraft landed hard and the right landing gear collapsed, causing the aircraft to veer to the right.”

The instructor immediately stopped the engine and the aircraft came to rest on the edge of a river bank, to the right side of the grass runway.

The instructor and his student, neither of whom had sustained injury, exited the aircraft.

Shortly thereafter, the nosewheel collapsed and the aircraft slid a short distance down the river bank.

The emergency services were notified by passers-by but they did not attend the scene after being assured by the instructor and an off-duty paramedic there were no injuries or fuel leaks.

The bulletin reported, “The instructor considered the nosewheel collapse may have been a result of the side loads imposed on it after the right landing gear collapsed or when it entered soft ground at the edge of the river bank.”