Cessna 172 C-GAYE - Epilogue

Report / August 2, 2017 / Project number: Cessna 172 C-GAYE - B Category

Location: Sainte-Marie, QC
Date: 2 August 2017
Status: Investigation completed

The accident flight was part of the Air Cadet Power Scholarship Program and flown under contract by a civilian flight training unit. The purpose of this flight was to conduct pilot training. An instructor and a cadet pilot took-off from the Saint-Frédéric aerodrome (CSZ4) and conducted air manoeuvers training prior to carrying out two forced landing exercises. The first forced landing exercise was uneventful and the aircraft was set-up for a second attempt. The instructor reduced the throttle to simulate an engine failure and the initial actions were carried out by the cadet pilot. A forced landing circuit was flown to a field with significant upslope terrain adjacent to the Chaudière River. Once it was evident the aircraft would safely reach the intended landing point, an overshoot was initiated. At that point the aircraft was lower than what the school procedures required and limited the time and space available to conduct the overshoot. Full power was applied and a climb was established, but the aircraft could not out-climb the rising terrain and impacted the trees at the top of the hill.

The aircraft sustained very serious damage and both pilots received minor injuries.

The exact cause of the accident could not be determined with certainty. The investigation focused on the human factors and although acute fatigue was not a factor, chronic fatigue could not be ruled out. The preventive measure recommends a review of the student to instructor ratio and their duty days during the compressed summer program.

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