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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 260226
Last updated: 13 May 2021
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Time:16:55 UTC
Type:Silhouette image of generic P28A model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Piper PA-28-161 Cherokee Warrior II
Owner/operator:Oxford Aviation Academy
Registration: G-BTRY
MSN: 28-8116190
Fatalities:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 2
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Substantial
Location:Enstone Aerodrome, Oxfordshire -   United Kingdom
Phase: Approach
Departure airport:Ledbury Airfield, Dymock, Herefordshire (EG2C)
Destination airport:Enstone Airfield (EGTN)
Investigating agency: AAIB
AAIB investigation to Piper PA-28-161 Warrior II, G-BTRY: Struck gravel pile during final approach, Enstone Airfield, Oxfordshire, 13 September 2020. The AAB Final Report was published on 13 May 20201, and the following is an excerpt from it:

"The pilot was returning to Enstone Airfield from Ledbury Airfield and, as the wind was light,he positioned the aircraft on a long final for Runway 08 to avoid landing into the setting sun. As the aircraft approached the airfield the pilot announced his intention to land on Runway 08 on the airfield’s Air/Ground frequency, and he heard a radio call in response stating that the runway in use was Runway 26. The pilot replied stating that he would join downwind for Runway 26.

He was then observed to fly a circuit to the north of the airfield, to position the aircraft on an approach for Runway 26. The pilot stated that he found the glare of the setting sun distracting as he approached the runway, but that he could see the white frangible airfield boundary fence and runway markings clearly enough to continue the approach. An instructor in an aircraft that was waiting to depart at the Runway 26 holding point stated that G-BTRY was very low on the final approach.

The aircraft’s left main landing gear tyre struck the top of a 3.5 m tall light-coloured pile of gravel that was being stored on a disused section of the airfield, outside the airfield boundary fence. The gravel pile was on the runway extended centreline, approximately 120 metres from the runway threshold.

The impact caused the left landing gear leg to detach from the aircraft. The instructor made a radio call to the pilot, informing him that he had lost his left landing gear leg and that he should go around. The aircraft was observed to briefly touch down on the right main landing gear before the pilot applied power and the aircraft climbed away.

Having appraised the situation, and discussed his options with the instructor by radio, the pilot decided to divert to Oxford Airport as it had better rescue and firefighting equipment than Enstone. The instructor called Oxford Airport ATC by phone to brief them on the situation and to expect G-BTRY to arrive shortly. The pilot contacted Oxford Airport by radio and landed on Runway 19.

Shortly after touchdown the aircraft left the runway’s paved surface to the left, coming to rest on the grass. The damage to the aircraft was limited to the left wing and the tailplane, and neither the pilot nor his passenger were injured. The pilot stated following the accident that he had been aware that the disused portion of the airfield was being used for the storage of sand and gravel.

=AAIB Conclusion=
The aircraft struck the gravel pile because it was too low on the final approach to Runway 26. The top of the gravel pile formed an angle of 1.7° to the Runway 26 threshold, well below a normal approach path angle of 3°. It is likely that the glare from the sun on the final approach, combined with the pilot’s visual focus on identifying the runway threshold contributed to him allowing the aircraft to descend too low on the approach. The lack of a conspicuous marking on the top of the gravel pile, as recommended in CAP 793, probably contributed to the pilot’s lack of perception of this obstacle.

=Safety action=
The airfield operator commented that following the accident the landowner of the disused portion of the airfield had reduced the height of the gravel piles and ensured that subsequent gravel storage occured further away from the airfield boundary, to remove the hazard to aircraft.

=Damage To Airframe=
Per the above AAIB Report "Damage to left main landing gear, left wing and tailplane


1. AAIB Final Report:
5. G-BTRY various photos 1997-2019:

Accident investigation:
Investigating agency: AAIB
Status: Investigation completed
Duration: 8 months
Download report: Final report


Piper PA-28-161 Charokee Warrior II G-BTRY post crash, Enstone, Oxfordshire 13 September 2020 (top left picture):

Revision history:

13-May-2021 17:10 Dr. John Smith Added
13-May-2021 17:11 Dr. John Smith Updated [Embed code, Narrative]
13-May-2021 17:19 harro Updated [Accident report]

Corrections or additions? ... Edit this accident description