Accident Lockheed P-3B Orion N926AU, Wednesday 20 April 2005
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Date:Wednesday 20 April 2005
Type:Silhouette image of generic P3 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different    
Lockheed P-3B Orion
Owner/operator:Aero Union
Registration: N926AU
MSN: 185-5171
Year of manufacture:1966
Total airframe hrs:15614 hours
Engine model:Allison T56-A10W
Fatalities:Fatalities: 3 / Occupants: 3
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Destroyed, written off
Location:22 km of Chico, CA -   United States of America
Phase: En route
Departure airport:Chico Airport, CA (CIC/KCIC)
Destination airport:Chico Airport, CA (CIC/KCIC)
Investigating agency: NTSB
Confidence Rating: Accident investigation report completed and information captured
The tanker aircraft had taken off from Chico qualification check flight for pilots who were scheduled to conduct firefighting operations during the upcoming fire season. The accident flight involved conducting practice drops of water over an area of rugged mountainous terrain located north of the Chico Airport. Prior to departing on the flight, the airplane was loaded with 2,550 gallons of water.
The Orion crashed and caught fire immediately following the training drop in the rugged terrain of the Lassen National Forest.

PROBABLE CAUSE: "Terrain clearance was not maintained while maneuvering for undetermined reasons. Mountainous terrain was a factor."

Accident investigation:
Investigating agency: NTSB
Report number: SEA05MA085
Status: Investigation completed
Duration: 1 year and 4 months
Download report: Final report




Revision history:


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