Runway incursion Accident BAC One-Eleven 518FG G-AXMJ, Thursday 18 April 1974
ASN logo

Date:Thursday 18 April 1974
Type:Silhouette image of generic BA11 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different    
BAC One-Eleven 518FG
Owner/operator:Court Line Aviation
Registration: G-AXMJ
MSN: 204
Year of manufacture:1970
Total airframe hrs:11153 hours
Fatalities:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 91
Other fatalities:1
Aircraft damage: Substantial, repaired
Location:London-Luton Airport (LTN) -   United Kingdom
Phase: Take off
Nature:Passenger - Non-Scheduled/charter/Air Taxi
Departure airport:London-Luton Airport (LTN/EGGW)
Destination airport:München-Riem Airport (MUC/EDDM)
Confidence Rating: Accident investigation report completed and information captured
BAC One-Eleven G-AXMJ was operating Court Line flight OU95 from Luton to Munich. It was cleared by Ground Movement Control (GMC) to taxy from the main apron to the holding point Delta for takeoff on runway 08. On arriving at Delta, the aircraft was held as GMC was still awaiting airways clearance for the flight. When this was received about two minutes later, GMC then cleared the aircraft to enter the runway and backtrack and at the same time passed the airways clearance. This was correctly read back by the aircraft and it was then instructed to contact the Tower. At 15:25:25 the Tower cleared the aircraft to line up and hold and approximately two minutes later, gave it clearance to takeoff. This was acknowledged by the aircraft at 15:27:31 with the words - "We're rolling, thank you".
In the same timeframe a Piper PA-23-250C Aztec (G-AYDE of McAlpine Aviation) had taxied to the same runway. The pilot preferred to use runway 26 for takeoff. The aircraft was then cleared initially to taxy to the intersection (of the west and east taxiways) and shortly afterwards this clearance was amended by GMC with the words - "Delta Echo cleared to Alpha 26", indicating that the aircraft was to hold at point Alpha preparatory for a takeoff on runway 26. This was acknowledged. At 15:27 GMC asked the pilot to "Report ready for takeoff", to which he replied, "Roger, be ready in 30 seconds". The Aztec then continued to taxy beyond the holding point Alpha towards the runway. The sole passenger aboard the aircraft, who was also an experienced pilot and sitting in the right hand front seat, queried the pilot on intercom whether they had been cleared to taxy beyond Alpha. He received no reply and by the time he realised that the pilot had not heard him, the Aztec had entered the runway.
The One-Eleven was being handled by the first officer from the right hand seat with the commander carrying out co-pilot duties from the left. For the first part of the takeoff run, the commander was concerned with checking instrument readings, and in consequence did not look out until the aircraft reached approximately 100 knots. At that moment both pilots in the One-Eleven saw the Aztec entering the runway from the left. When it became apparent that the Aztec was not going to stop, the commander of the One-Eleven took over control and opened both the throttles fully. He then steered the aircraft as far as he could to the right and at the same time attempted to lift the port wing over the Aztec.
At this stage, the passenger in the Aztec saw the One-Eleven approaching from his right and that it was very close. He had time only to duck below the cockpit coaming before the collision occurred and was unable to warn the pilot.
The Aztec was struck by the outer six metres of the One-Eleven's port wing; both propellers were damaged and the cabin top was sliced off to the level of the coaming. The pilot of the Aztec was killed instantly and the passenger injured.
The port wing of the One-Eleven was severely damaged, resulting in a large release of fuel. Nobody aboard the aircraft was hurt and there was no fire. Immediately the impact was felt the commander of the One-Eleven abandoned the takeoff and advised the Tower. By use of full reverse thrust and maximum braking the aircraft was brought to rest in 750 metres, well within the remaining length of the runway.
The commander then ordered the aircraft to be evacuated because of the risk of fire due to the leakage of fuel from the port wing. The evacuation was delayed when the cabin staff had difficulty in opening the two forward exits in order to deploy the escape slides. Eventually, after using considerable force, the commander himself was able to open both doors and the evacuation proceeded normally without injury to passengers or crew.

CAUSE:"The accident was caused by the pilot of the Aztec failing to comply with an air traffic control instruction to hold his aircraft clear of the runway at a properly defined holding point, with the result that he taxied his aircraft on to the runway into the path of another aircraft which was taking-off. The non standard R/T phraseology employed by the GMC controller when issuing this instruction together with the absence of any additional safeguards to ensure that aircraft comply with ATC instructions when approaching the holding point were considered to be contributory factors."



Revision history:


The Aviation Safety Network is an exclusive service provided by:
Quick Links:

CONNECT WITH US: FSF on social media FSF Facebook FSF Twitter FSF Youtube FSF LinkedIn FSF Instagram

©2024 Flight Safety Foundation

1920 Ballenger Av, 4th Fl.
Alexandria, Virginia 22314