Reims Cessna F172M Skyhawk, G-BCZM, 22 January 2010

Reims Cessna F172M Skyhawk, G-BCZM


The aircraft was in the latter stages of a practice approach to Runway 31, from which the pilot intended to carry out an overshoot to preserve the grass surface. The weather was good, with a surface wind from 340° at 12 kt. At a height of about 20 ft, with full flaps selected and an airspeed of 65 kt, the aircraft began to sink unexpectedly towards the up-sloping runway, so the pilot applied full power and lowered the nose to maintain airspeed and avert a stall. He then pulled back on the control column, to arrest the descent, but the aircraft landed firmly, nosewheel first, and bounced back into the air. The engine and airframe were still responding normally, so the pilot completed an uneventful circuit and landed without further incident. A subsequent engineering investigation revealed that there was a fracture in the lower cross member of the engine mount, which was probably attributable to a hard landing on the nose landing gear. The pilot concluded that a downdraft may have caused the aircraft to sink and that his response was probably too great, given the proximity of the runway surface.

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Published 10 December 2014