Accident Dornier 228-202 9N-AHA, Friday 28 September 2012
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Date:Friday 28 September 2012
Type:Silhouette image of generic D228 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different    
Dornier 228-202
Owner/operator:Sita Air
Registration: 9N-AHA
MSN: 8123
Year of manufacture:1987
Total airframe hrs:15248 hours
Engine model:Garrett TPE331-10T-511D
Fatalities:Fatalities: 19 / Occupants: 19
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Destroyed, written off
Location:ca 0,4 km SE of Kathmandu-Tribhuvan Airport (KTM) -   Nepal
Phase: Initial climb
Nature:Passenger - Scheduled
Departure airport:Kathmandu-Tribhuvan Airport (KTM/VNKT)
Destination airport:Lukla Airport (LUA/VNLK)
Investigating agency: Nepal AAIC
Confidence Rating: Accident investigation report completed and information captured
A Dornier 228-202 passenger plane, operated by Sita Air, was destroyed when it crashed shortly after takeoff from Kathmandu-Tribhuvan Airport (KTM), Nepal. All 19 on board were killed.
The airplane was cleared for takeoff from runway 20 at 06:17. During the takeoff run, while approaching 70 kt, approximately 13 kt below V1 and VR, the first officer called "Vee one rotate". The aircraft began to rotate but did not lift off the ground and the nose
was briefly lowered again. As the aircraft reached 86 kt, it lifted off the ground and the landing gear was raised immediately.
As the aircraft began to climb, it accelerated to 89 kt over approximately two seconds. It continued to climb to 100 ft above the runway over the next 11 seconds but, during this time, the speed decreased to 77 kt. The aircraft then flew level for 14 seconds during which time the following occurred: the speed decreased to 69 kt; the air traffic controller asked "Any technical?" to which
the pilot replied "[uncertain]… due bird hit"; its heading changed slowly from 200 °M to approximately 173 °M; and the stall warning was triggered for three seconds as the aircraft decelerated through 71 kt.
Two seconds after the stall warning ended, it was triggered again for approximately six seconds with the airspeed at 69 kt. The aircraft began a gentle descent at 69 kt with the stall warning sounding and the rate of turn to the left increased rapidly. It departed controlled flight, most probably left wing low, and crashed into a small open area 420 m south-east of the end of runway 20.
A runway inspection found the remains of a bird, identified as a "Black Kite", at a position 408 m from Intersection 2. No evidence of bird remains was found in the engines.

Causal Factors
The investigation identified the following causal factors:
1. During level flight phase of the aircraft, the drag on the aircraft was greater than the power available and the aircraft decelerated. That resulted in excessive drag in such critical phase of ascent lowering the required thrust. The investigation was unable to determine the reason for the reduced thrust.
2. The flight crew did not maintain the airspeed above the stall speed and there was insufficient height available to recover when the aircraft departed controlled flight.
(c) Contributory Factors
The investigation identified the following contributory factors:
1. The flight crew did not maintain V2 during the climb and so the power required to maintain the level flight was greater than it would otherwise have been.
2. The flight crew did not maintain the runway centreline which removed the option of landing the aircraft on the runway remaining.

Accident investigation:
Investigating agency: Nepal AAIC
Report number: final report
Status: Investigation completed
Duration: 10 months
Download report: Final report


Hemant Arjyal
Nepal News
The Kathmandu Post

History of this aircraft

Other occurrences involving this aircraft

9 September 2009 9N-AHA Sita Air 0 Ranjha airpoort, Nepalgunj sub


  • 8th worst accident in 2012
  • 2nd worst accident of this aircraft type
  • worst accident of this aircraft type at the time



photo (c) Krish Dulal; near Kathmandu-Tribhuvan Airport (KTM); 28 September 2012; (CC:by-sa)

photo (c) Eugen FRANTIU; Lukla Airport (LUA/VNLK); 21 April 2012

photo (c) Eugen FRANTIU; Lukla Airport (LUA/VNLK); 21 April 2012

photo (c) Eugen FRANTIU; Lukla Airport (LUA/VNLK); 21 April 2012

photo (c) Eugen FRANTIU; Lukla Airport (LUA/VNLK); 21 April 2012

Revision history:


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