Accident de Havilland Canada DHC-6 Twin Otter 300 9N-AFE, Wednesday 8 October 2008
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Date:Wednesday 8 October 2008
Time:07:31
Type:Silhouette image of generic DHC6 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different    
de Havilland Canada DHC-6 Twin Otter 300
Owner/operator:Yeti Airlines
Registration: 9N-AFE
MSN: 720
Year of manufacture:1980
Total airframe hrs:32925 hours
Cycles:65041 flights
Engine model:Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6A-27
Fatalities:Fatalities: 18 / Occupants: 19
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Destroyed, written off
Category:Accident
Location:Lukla-Tenzing-Hillary Airport (LUA) -   Nepal
Phase: Landing
Nature:Passenger - Scheduled
Departure airport:Kathmandu-Tribhuvan Airport (KTM/VNKT)
Destination airport:Lukla-Tenzing-Hillary Airport (LUA/VNLK)
Investigating agency: Nepal
Confidence Rating: Accident investigation report completed and information captured
Narrative:
The aircraft took off from Kathmandu Airport at 06:51 on a domestic flight to Lukla (LUA). Lukla Airport has a single runway, 06/24 which is situated at an elevation of 9380 feet. The 1600 feet long bitumen runway has an upslope of 11,75°. Runway 06 can only be used for landing.
Visibility was reported as poor as the Twin Otter came in to land. It contacted rocks near the runway, crashed and caught fire. The captain was the only survivor.

Cause:
The probable primary cause was flight crew's misjudgment, based on the weather information from all the preceding aircraft and Lukla Information, to enter into cloud patch on final wherein the aircraft encountered the rapidly uplifting fog on short final resulting in control flight into terrain.
a) Failure on the part of regulatory body and company safety management to check the wrong practices being followed by pilots especially in STOL airfields like Lukla on a timely basis.
b) AFIS personnel on duty not being able to declare airport closure due to high workload, stress and landing of preceding three aircraft in similar marginal weather condition.
c) Operator's priority of economical aspect over safety such as their unequal treatments between pilots landing in adverse weather and diverters, creating a 'Must Land' situation.

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

Sources:

Yeti Airlines
Nepalnews
Hemant Arjyal
Pilot blamed for air crash near Everest (The Age, 1-1-2009)

History of this aircraft

Other occurrences involving this aircraft

3 July 2006 9N-AFE Yeti Airlines 0 Bajura Airport (BJU) sub
Undershoot

Statistics

  • 12th worst accident in 2008
  • 21st worst accident of this aircraft type
  • 18th worst accident of this aircraft type at the time

Location

Images:


photo (c) Superikonoskop; 29 October 2010; (CC:by-sa)


photo (c) Gethin Hill; Kathmandu-Tribhuvan Airport (KTM/VNKT); 27 September 2008

Revision history:

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