Accident Cessna F172P Skyhawk II (Reims) OO-TRB, Saturday 2 January 2010
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Date:Saturday 2 January 2010
Time:15:30 UTC
Type:Silhouette image of generic C172 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different    
Cessna F172P Skyhawk II (Reims)
Owner/operator:Private
Registration: OO-TRB
MSN: F172-2108
Fatalities:Fatalities: 2 / Occupants: 2
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Destroyed
Category:Accident
Location:Drongengoedbos, near Ursel, East Flanders -   Belgium
Phase: Landing
Nature:Private
Departure airport:Ursel Airfield (EBUL)
Destination airport:Ursel Airfield (EBUL)
Investigating agency: AAIU Belgium
Confidence Rating: Accident investigation report completed and information captured
Narrative:
The pilot owner arrived in Ursel on the afternoon of Saturday, January 2 with the intention to make a local flight with a friend. The pilot-owner registered her flight in the airfield logbook and went to the hangar to prepare her airplane.
The weather conditions around Ursel at that time were rather good, as reported by other pilots. Seven airplanes (including OO-TRB) took off - essentially for local flights -.
The OO-TRB took off approximately at 15.00 UTC with two persons on board for a local flight.
Around 15:20 UTC, the meteorological conditions around Ursel degraded rapidly, involving significant snowfall.
Subsequently, airplanes in the circuit landed immediately or diverted to other airfields. The last airplane landed at 15:40 UTC.
OO-TRB was called on the Ursel radio frequency without success.
Reportedly, an airplane was seen crossing the airfield from north to south and then was not heard from again.
A witness (reported the day after) heard an airplane engine power increase followed by trees cracking and crashing sounds in a neighbouring wood around 15:30 UTC.
A search action was initiated, involving a SAR helicopter from the Military and a Federal Police helicopter.
The wreckage of the airplane was found around 21:00 UTC North of the airfield. The flight direction shown by the damage to the trees was North to East. The airplane fuselage was lying upside down. The engine was still
attached to the fuselage, but was angled 75° upward . The LH wing was separated and laid 4 meters behind the fuselage.
The RH wing was crushed and laid underneath the fuselage. The two occupants were fatally injured.

Causes:
The cause of the accident is a controlled flight into terrain due to low altitude flying in adverse meteorological conditions and the 'GetHome-Itis' phenomenon.
Contributing factors:
- The lack of navigation flight experience probably prevented the pilot considering a diversion to another airfield.
- Flight into adverse weather remains a leading cause of fatal accidents in general aviation. This situation occurs when a pilot fails to accurately recognize the weather conditions present.

Sources:

https://mobilit.belgium.be/sites/default/files/downloads/AA-10-2.pdf?language=nl(in Dutch)
https://flightlevel.be/535/cessna-stort-neer-nabij-vliegveld-ursel-2-doden/
https://www.hbvl.be/cnt/aid891048/vliegtuigje-stort-neer-in-ursel
https://www.hln.be/nieuws/binnenland/lokale-sneeuwbui-verraste-pilote-cessna-in-knesselare~a49ccf92/

Images:


(c) Harro Ranter, EHMZ 22-APR-1990

Revision history:

Date/timeContributorUpdates
02-Jan-2010 23:58 simulator Added
03-Jan-2010 00:52 harro Updated [Aircraft type, Registration, Cn]
03-Jan-2010 00:58 RobertMB Updated [Aircraft type, Cn, Location, Source, Narrative]
20-Feb-2011 14:39 harro Updated [Time, Source, Narrative]
30-Sep-2011 07:01 Uli Elch Updated [Aircraft type, Cn, Operator, Location, Departure airport, Destination airport, Source]
22-Nov-2017 09:59 Anon. Updated [Source]
22-Nov-2017 10:04 harro Updated [Narrative]
07-Nov-2022 07:49 Ron Averes Updated [Location, Departure airport, Destination airport]

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