Vans RV-9A, G-CCZT
The aircraft was landing on Runway 13, the grass surface of which was damp, in a two to three knot easterly wind. The pilot reported that, while rolling out after a ‘very acceptable landing’, he applied a small amount of back pressure to the control column to keep the weight off the nose wheel. As the speed decreased through about 30 kt the aircraft encountered some surface undulations and the first of these pitched the aircraft into the face of the second. The pilot stated that the ground in that area was soft and it appeared that the nut at the bottom of the nose landing gear, in front of the wheel, had dug in to the surface causing the nose leg to bend. The pilot considered that the accident was partly due to his landing technique, in that he did not apply sufficient back pressure to ensure that weight was kept off the nose landing gear as long as possible. He commented that he was very new to the aircraft and needed further practice on this aspect of his flying. He also concluded that he should have ensured that the landing surface was acceptable. He stated that the airfield is known for being a little bumpy in places and that, being a new operator there, he was not familiar with the areas to avoid. The grass runways at this airfield are unlicensed and, in practice, identify the landing direction only. The runway lengths are defined but there are no runway edge markings and the pilot stated that all the grass is mown to a uniform length. The airfield is primarily used as a gliding site. Light aircraft are welcomed but pilots are advised that it is at there own risk. General Aviation Safety Sense Leaflet 12C, entitled Strip Sense, provides advice on unlicensed aerodromes and private strips. It includes a section on ‘Assessing the Strip’ and the factors to consider. The pilot stated that in this accident he encountered the undulations half way along and towards the left of the landing area.
Vans RV-9A, G-CCZT 8-05.pdf (57.80 kb)
Published 10 December 2014