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Status: Accident investigation report completed and information captured
Date:Wednesday 4 October 2017
Type:Silhouette image of generic DHC6 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
de Havilland Canada DHC-6 Twin Otter 300
Registration: 8Q-ISB
MSN: 655
First flight: 1979-11-29 (37 years 11 months)
Total airframe hrs:26314
Engines: 2 Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6A-27
Crew:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 3
Passengers:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 15
Total:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 18
Aircraft damage: Substantial
Aircraft fate: Repaired
Location:off Malé-Velana International Airport (MLE) (   Maldives)
Phase: Landing (LDG)
Nature:Domestic Scheduled Passenger
Departure airport:Niyama Resort, Dhaalu atoll, Maldives
Destination airport:Malé-Velana International Airport (MLE/VRMM), Maldives
A de Havilland Canada DHC-6 Twin Otter seaplane sustained substantial damage in a landing accident in the Hulhumalé Lagoon near Malé-Velana International Airport, Maldives. All occupants survived the accident.
The aircraft was flying tourists from the Niyama Resort, Dhaalu atoll, back to Malé. The captain taxied and did the take-off from Niyama because the winds were observed around 15kts, with rough sea conditions. After the aircraft was airborne, passing 1000 ft, the captain handed over the controls to the co-pilot to continue the rest of the flight to Velana International Airport.
As the aircraft approached Velana International Airport, both the captain and the co-pilot noticed inclement weather approaching from the west. According to the crew, at 300ft the aircraft was configured for landing with full flaps and propeller levers at the full forward position. Wind shield wipers were turned on due to the light rain. The visibility deteriorated when the aircraft approached to land. Right after the aircraft first contacted water, the visibility briefly dropped to near zero due to heavy rain.
The aircraft touched down in the intended landing area, on the left float first and bounced, then contacted the water a second time on the right float. The co-pilot reduced power by pulling the power levers back. At the same time, as stated by the captain, he placed his right hand on the power levers (over the co-pilot’s left hand) and pushed the power levers fully forward, applying full power with the intention of going around whilst calling "Max power". The captain neither announced that he was taking over control, nor called for flaps 10°, as per the procedures. There was no response from the co-pilot in handing over of controls to the captain. The aircraft banked sharply to the right, turning right and crashed. The aircraft finally flipped over and came to rest upside down, facing south and was partly submerged.
All passengers and crew evacuated safely through the right hand emergency exit, which was above the water.

Probable Cause:

a. Improper recovery techniques from a bounced landing; application of go-around procedures whilst the aircraft was at low speed with flaps fully extended.
b. Breakdown of crew coordination during the attempted go-around.
c. Poor judgement of approaching inclement weather condition; crew decided to land, hoping that they could make it before the approaching storm strikes the landing area.

Accident investigation:
Investigating agency: AICC Maldives
Status: Investigation completed
Duration: 1 year and 4 months
Accident number: 2017/02
Download report: Final report
Language: English

Bounced on landing
Runway mishap


METAR Weather report:
10:00 UTC / 15:00 local time:
VRMM 041000Z 25014KT 9999 SCT017 FEW018CB BKN270 30/25 Q1007 CB NW,NNW TEMPO 5000 -SHRA

11:00 UTC / 16:00 local time:
VRMM 041100Z 28013KT 9999 SCT017 FEW018CB BKN270 30/25 Q1007 CB NW NOSIG

12:00 UTC / 17:00 local time:
VRMM 041200Z 26014KT 9999 SCT017 FEW018CB BKN280 28/25 Q1008 RESHRA CB SE,S TEMPO 4000 SHRA

Follow-up / safety actions

AICC Maldives issued 4 Safety Recommendations

Show all...


photo of DHC-6-Twin-Otter-300-8Q-ISB

Video, social media

Aircraft history
date registration operator remarks
29 Nov. 1979 9N-ABQ de Havilland Canada first flight
12 Dec. 1979 9N-ABQ Royal Nepal Airlines delivered
31 May 1997 9N-ABQ Royal Nepal Airlines Landing accident at Phaplu, Nepal
19 Aug. 2002 9N-ABQ Royal Nepal Airlines Landing accident at Nepalganj, Nepal
ca 2002 9N-ABQ Royal Nepal Airlines withdraw from use; stored at Kathmandu, Nepal
3 Jan. 2012 9N-ABQ Tara Air leased
19 Aug. 2012 9N-ABQ Tara Air Runway excrusion incident, Jomsom, Nepal
21 Sep. 2012 9N-ABQ Tara Air Ran into fence during takeoff Dolpa, Nepal
June 2015 9N-AKM Tara Air new registration
29 Jan. 2016 N106WF Aerostar Bravo Ltd registered
24 Oct. 2016 8Q-ISB Maldivian registered

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 Niyama Resort, Dhaalu atoll to Malé-Velana International Airport as the crow flies is 180 km (112 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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