Mid-air collision Accident Cessna 172M Skyhawk C-GKWL, Tuesday 10 August 2021
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Date:Tuesday 10 August 2021
Time:13:30 LT
Type:Silhouette image of generic C172 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different    
Cessna 172M Skyhawk
Owner/operator:Canadian Flyers International Inc.
Registration: C-GKWL
MSN: 17268441
Year of manufacture:1976
Fatalities:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 2
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Substantial
Location:1,5 nm NW of Toronto-Buttonville Airport, ON (YKZ/CYKZ) -   Canada
Phase: Approach
Departure airport:Toronto-Buttonville Airport, ON (YKZ/CYKZ)
Destination airport:Toronto-Buttonville Airport, ON (YKZ/CYKZ)
Investigating agency: TSB
Confidence Rating: Accident investigation report completed and information captured
During operations in support of police activity approximately 1.5nm NW of Toronto Buttonville Airport (CYKZ), Ontario, a DJI Matrice 210 RPAS operated by the York Regional Police, collided with C-GKWL, a Cessna 172 operated by Canadian Flyers International Inc., which was on final approach to runway 15 at CYKZ with an instructor and student pilot on board. The collision occurred along the approach path for Runway 15.
The instructor reported that they had just turned from base leg to final for Runway 15 at Toronto/Buttonville, ON (CYKZ) and were established and stable at 1100 ASL, or about 500 AGL, when they felt a jolt that pushed them back on their seat. They thought they had hit a large bird. They proceeded to land. There was no change in configuration or power since they were about to land. When exiting the aircraft, they were shocked to see a major dent on the left underside of the engine cowling. The airbox was also bent. A few hours later, a police detective confirmed a York Regional Police drone had struck their aircraft. The aircraft suffered major damage, including a propeller strike.
There were no injuries to the pilots or to persons on the ground.

The remotely piloted aircraft, a DJI Matrice M210 (registration C-2105569275), had been in a stationary hover at 400 feet above ground level when the 2 aircraft collided.The RPAS was destroyed.

Findings as to causes and contributing factors
1. The flight crew of the Cessna 172N was unaware of the presence of airborne remotely piloted aircraft traffic in the vicinity and, due to several factors, the active scanning that is part of the see-and-avoid principle was unsuccessful in identifying the conflict.
2. York Regional Police policy does not require that visual observers be trained crew members, and the remotely piloted aircraft pilot did not brief the visual observer on his role and responsibilities before the operation. As a result, the visual observer was not aware of the requirement to maintain visual line-of-sight with the remotely piloted aircraft, nor was he trained in visual scanning techniques or aircraft identification.
3. The remotely piloted aircraft pilot was tasked with operating the camera system, monitoring the status of the remotely piloted aircraft, and communicating on multiple channels. As a result, he likely became task saturated, restricting his ability to visually monitor the remotely piloted aircraft and hear radio calls on the control zone’s mandatory frequency and the sound of incoming aircraft, both of which preceded the collision.
4. In the moments leading up to the collision, the pilot of the remotely piloted aircraft likely was task saturated, the visual observer was unaware of the requirement to maintain visual line-of-sight, and the Cessna pilots’ active scan was unsuccessful; consequently, the conflict went unrecognized and the 2 aircraft collided.

Accident investigation:
Investigating agency: TSB
Report number: A21O0069
Status: Investigation completed
Duration: 1 year and 5 months
Download report: Final report


TSB 2021O1096


Revision history:

18-Aug-2021 19:27 harro Added
18-Aug-2021 19:29 harro Updated [Location]
22-Aug-2021 14:24 harro Updated [Source, Narrative]
22-Aug-2021 14:24 harro Updated [Damage, Narrative]
24-Aug-2021 12:08 harro Updated [Embed code]

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