Focke Wulf (Piaggio) P149D, D-EARY
The aircraft had undergone an annual maintenance check at Caernarfon Airfield, followed by a local test flight. The pilot had decided to break the subsequent flight to his base airfield in North Yorkshire with a stop at Stretton Airfield. He obtained permission to use the airfield, and the forecast weather, which showed fine conditions and a surface wind from 240° at 8 to 12 kt. On arrival overhead Stretton, the conditions were found to be as forecast and the pilot carried out an approach to Runway 27.
The runway surface was variable, with only an 18 m strip on the north side (right side, viewed from the 27 approach) maintained in a suitable condition. The approach was into a low sun, which made judgement of height difficult. Just before touchdown, the pilot applied rudder to remove drift and align the aircraft with the runway. However, it continued just above the runway and drifted to the right. The right wing struck a large bush, which yawed the aircraft to the right and into a hedge.
The pilot attributed the accident to his continuing with the approach when the low sun and a stroboscopic effect made judgement of height difficult.
Published 10 December 2014