Wittman W8 Tailwind, G-BDBD
The aircraft commander was conducting a ‘checkout’ flight for a PPL qualified pilot under the LAA coaching scheme. The aircraft was only fitted with one set of brake pedals for use by the occupant of the left seat, which in this case was the pilot undergoing the check. The commander occupied the right seat. Following an uneventful flight, the commander carried out a normal landing on Runway 18, with a light wind from the south-west. After the touchdown and initial rollout, the aircraft began to drift to the right. The commander reported that normal input of the rudder did not correct the drift, so he asked the pilot in the left seat to apply the left brake pedal. The drift to the right then rapidly increased until the aircraft left the runway and ground looped to the right. The left landing gear leg collapsed and the aircraft suffered extensive damage. Both pilots considered that an inadvertent application of the right brake pedal rather than the left, might have contributed to the loss of control. The commander reported that inspection of the aircraft following the event had also identified a pre-accident partial failure of the left gear leg mount.
Wittman W8 Tailwind, G-BDBD 12-11.pdf (225.16 kb)