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Last updated: 6 March 2021
Status:Final
Date:Tuesday 18 December 2018
Time:19:53
Type:Silhouette image of generic D228 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Dornier 228-201
Operator:Africa's Connection STP
Registration: S9-AUN
C/n / msn: 8076
First flight: 1985-10-23 (33 years 2 months)
Total airframe hrs:13026
Cycles:14222
Engines: 2 Garrett TPE331-5-252D
Crew:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 3
Passengers:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 7
Total:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 10
Aircraft damage: Substantial
Location:São Tomé Island Airport (TMS) (   São Tomé and Príncipe)
Phase: Landing (LDG)
Nature:Int'l Non Scheduled Passenger
Departure airport:São Tomé Island Airport (TMS/FPST), São Tomé and Príncipe
Destination airport:Douala Airport (DLA/FKKD), Cameroon
Narrative:
The Dornier 228-201 took off from São Tomé Island Airport at 15:16 hours local time to Douala, Cameroon.
After take off from Sao Tomé the crew noticed that with gear retraction the transition light did not go off and was on throughout the flight. During the approach to Douala and having selected the landing gear down, the crew realized that the nose gear was not down and only the main gear was extended and locked. The crew recycled the landing gear but to no avail. With this abnormal condition the crew decided to return to home base at São Tomé Airport.
At 19:53 a forced nose gear-up landing was performed, resulting in substantial damage to the aircraft's nose area.

Probable Cause:

Causal Factors:
The investigation determines that the cause of this accident as:
During towing of the aircraft, the pin for towing came out and at time of turning it damaged the nose landing gear torque link affecting the alignment and centering of the nose wheel.
After take off and selecting landing gear up, the nose gear was stuck in the nose compartment due to 15° off deflection from centre point.
Nose wheel could not be extended because it was stuck in the nose compartment.
Contributory Factors:
1 Inadequate tow bar.
2 Inadequate aircraft tow tractor.
3 Aircraft tow tractor was technically faulty.
4 Lack of appropriate training for ground personnel on aircraft towing.
5 Undocumented ground personnel discharging maintenance duties.
6 Roughness and degradation of taxiway surface.
7 No action was taken for specific inspection on the nose landing gear for any damage caused during towing the aircraft.
8 No compliance with Service Bulletin no. SI-228-036 issued by the manufacturer on 28th April 1989.

Accident investigation:
cover
Investigating agency: CNIPAIA
Status: Investigation completed
Duration: 1 year and 4 months
Accident number: AC/18/12/2018/RF
Download report: Final report

Classification:
Gear-up landing
Forced landing on runway

Sources:
» BFU18-1804-DX
» telanon.info


Follow-up / safety actions

issued 7 Safety Recommendations

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Map
This map shows the airport of departure and the intended destination of the flight. The line between the airports does not display the exact flight path.
Distance from São Tomé Island Airport to Douala Airport as the crow flies is 521 km (326 miles).
Accident location: Approximate; accuracy within a few kilometers.

This information is not presented as the Flight Safety Foundation or the Aviation Safety Network’s opinion as to the cause of the accident. It is preliminary and is based on the facts as they are known at this time.
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