Accident SAI KZ VII U-8 Lærke OY-EPS,
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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 280967
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Date:Saturday 30 July 2022
Type:SAI KZ VII U-8 Lærke
Registration: OY-EPS
MSN: 188
Fatalities:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 2
Aircraft damage: Substantial
Location:near Nordborg, Als -   Denmark
Phase: Initial climb
Departure airport:EKNB
Destination airport:EKNB
Investigating agency: HCLJ
Confidence Rating: Accident investigation report completed and information captured
The accident occurred during a local VFR flight from Nordborg (EKNB).
It was the aircraft's third flight after a lengthy rebuild/refurbishment, undertaken under the auspices of the aircraft's owners group and under the control of the KZ and Veteran Aircraft Club. The aircraft had been released for test flying during the rebuild, to be carried out according to a specified test flight programme. The test flight programme was intended to be carried out by three pilots from the owner group, including pilot A and pilot B. Pilot B flew the first flight of the test flight programme two days before the accident. The flight was a VFR flight from Sønderborg (EKSB) to EKNB and included a series of stall and high speed manoeuvres to check the aircraft's flying qualities. The second flight of the test flight programme was performed on the day of the accident as a local VFR flight from EKNB. Pilot B was seated in the left pilot seat and was the pilot in command, while pilot A was seated in the right pilot seat and assisted to note flight parameters during various flight manoeuvres. Before the second flight, pilot B performed a pre-flight inspection of the aircraft including a check of the aircraft control lines via the left hand grip of the control column. Neither the pre-flight inspection nor the check of the aircraft control lines gave rise to any observations.
Before the accident flight, pilot A, who was the pilot-in-command on this flight and was seated in the left pilot seat, performed a pre-flight inspection of the aircraft including a check of the aircraft control surfaces via the left hand grip of the control column. Neither the pre-flight inspection nor the check of the aircraft control lines gave rise to any observations. Weather conditions were approximately calm, with good visibility and cloud cover. After take-off, pilot A performed three touch-and-go landings to runway 06 with flaps deployed in different flap positions, and pilot A would then make a full stop landing to runway 06. On final, Pilot A trimmed the aircraft to an approach speed of approximately 90 km/h with flaps fully deployed (30°). The flare became high, the aircraft sank through, hit the runway and became airborne again. Pilot A corrected by raising the aircraft's nose attitude. To avoid the aircraft ending up with a high nose attitude and low engine power at low altitude, pilot B increased the engine power partially and immediately thereafter to full throttle, as an aborted landing seemed a better alternative than attempting to land on the remainder of the runway. As Pilot B had no intention of taking control of the aircraft, Pilot B did not call "my controls". When the engine power was increased by pilot B, pilot A experienced it as a "tap on the control column". As pilots A and B had previously used the method of "tapping the control stick" as a sign of transfer of control of the aircraft, pilot A perceived that pilot B had taken control of the aircraft. Pilot A therefore moved his hands and feet from the control lines but refrained from calling "your controls". Pilot A prepared to engage the flaps when the airspeed was sufficiently increased because the flap lever was located to the left of the left pilot seat and therefore difficult to operate by a pilot seated in the right pilot seat.
The aircraft continued at a low altitude across the runway before, approximately halfway down the runway, it began to turn left with an estimated bank of 15-20°. To the left of Runway 06, between the airfield and the left downwind of Runway 06, was a small wooded area. The aircraft climbed and accelerated only slowly due to the fully deployed flaps, and after a short time it was not possible to fly over the wooded area. Both pilots realised that the situation was untenable. Pilot A called "watch out for the trees" while pilot B grabbed the right hand grip of the control stick to bank right and turn east over the wooded area. The right hand grip of the steering column slipped out of its tube attachment on the steering column as the aircraft's bank increased to the left. Pilot B then grabbed the y-junction on the control stick and increased the aircraft's bank to the left to approximately 60-70° while giving the left rudder, to avoid the west of the forest patch. The aircraft turned clear of the wooded area as the aircraft's nose attitude fell towards the horizon due to the bank, airspeed and fully deployed flaps. The aircraft was now flying in a westerly direction towards a lee fence located between the wooded area and the western part of the runway. It was Pilot B's understanding that the aircraft was on the back side of the power curve at this time and did not have the energy to fly over the lee. Pilot B elected to fly through the top of the lee fence with the wings in the horizontal position to achieve a collision with the lee fence evenly distributed over the entire frontal area of the aircraft, and which would hopefully limit the consequences and thereby prevent a fire from occurring. The aircraft collided with the top of an oak tree in the shelterbelt, turned left and struck a stump on the west side of the shelterbelt in an approximately vertical attitude.

A control input, followed by a lack of internal communication, and a procedure previously used on another aircraft type, briefly led to neither of the two pilots on board being in control of the aircraft.
A failure to secure the right control handle resulted in Pilot B not gaining control of the aircraft in time to avoid an accident.

Accident investigation:
Investigating agency: HCLJ
Report number: 
Status: Investigation completed
Duration: 2 months
Download report: Final report


Revision history:

31-Jul-2022 05:51 viking Added
31-Jul-2022 05:52 harro Updated [Aircraft type, Phase, Nature]
31-Jul-2022 06:09 Aerossurance Updated [Location, Nature]
31-Jul-2022 08:11 RobertMB Updated [Aircraft type, Registration, Cn, Location, Phase, Source, Narrative]
31-Jul-2022 08:51 Updated [Aircraft type, Registration, Cn]
31-Jul-2022 08:51 harro Updated [Source, Damage]
21-Oct-2022 13:43 harro Updated [Phase, Nature, Departure airport, Destination airport, Narrative, Accident report]

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