Power loss due to fuel starvation was the probable cause of a Cessna plane crash that took place close to Birr airfield on November 11 last year and claimed the lives of student pilot Damien Deegan from Crinkill and instructor Niall Doherty, according to a report published today (Tuesday) by the Air Accident Investigation Unit (AAIU).
A failure to maintain adequate airspeed following a power loss and inadequate fuel management are listed in today’s report as contributory causes to the accident.
As a result of the investigation into the Cessna F150H8 crash eight recommendations have been made.
Those recommendations include that Ormand Flying Club should publish further guidance regarding fuel policies and procedures in its club rules, that its on-board record of flights be amended to include fuel uplifts and fuel on board prior to each departure and that guidance regarding the number of instructional flights conducted by an instructor in a day and the associated rest requirements should be reviewed and published.
Recommendations also include that the Irish Aviation Authority (IAA) should consider a procedural requirement that registered training facilities amend their on-board record of flights or equivalent documentation to include fuel uplift and the fuel on board prior to each departure, should consider amending the registered training facility inspection form to include a check of documented fuel policies and a record of the aircraft’s empty weight and should consider a requirement that general aviation aircraft empty weight weighing reports state whether or not the weight of unusuable fuel and oil is included.
The report also recommends that the General Aviation Safety Council of Ireland (GASCI) should consider promulgating advice that general aviation pilots should record fuel quantity prior to each flight and promoting awareness among the general aviation aircraft community of the dangers of loss of control following a sudden engine failure close to the ground.