AAIB investigation to Piper PA-24-250 Commanche, N7832P

Inadvertent gear-up landing, Chiltern Air Park, Oxfordshire, 18 February 2018.


The pilot had departed from Benson airfield to carry out circuits at Chiltern Air Park which is located 4 nm south of Benson. He had spoken to the owner of Chiltern Air Park to obtain permission and check the runway conditions. After joining the circuit at Chiltern he omitted to select the landing gear down during his downwind checks. During the base and final legs he was focussed on avoiding ‘noise abatement’ areas, and although he recalled performing a ‘reds, blues, greens’ ‘touch drill’ check, he did not consciously check that the green landing gear lights were on. The aircraft touched down lightly on the grass and came to rest on its underside.

The pilot stated that due to the short distance between Benson and Chiltern it was a very quick transition from climb-out, departure checks before needing to focus on joining the circuit. His focus on maintaining a good look-out for other aircraft and correctly joining the circuit contributed to him rushing his downwind checks. He thinks he said the word “undercarriage” on the downwind check but carried out a ‘touch drill’ without manually selecting the gear down.

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Piper PA-24-250 Commanche, N7832P 08-18

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Glossary of abbreviations

Published 9 August 2018