Aviation Investigation A17W0172
Collision with terrain
Updated on 18 December 2017
The following update contains facts that the TSB has been able to validate at this time. It contains no conclusions about the factors that contributed to the occurrence. The final investigation report will include an analysis of all relevant factors and provide the Board's findings.
On 26 October 2017, the Springbank Air Training College Piper PA 34-200T Seneca II, registered as C-GCCM, departed Calgary Springbank Airport (CYBW) from Runway 17 at 0950 Mountain Daylight Time on a multi-engine training flight. On board the aircraft were the student pilot and the flight instructor.
Based on radar data, the aircraft did not climb higher than 300 feet above ground level and did not exceed 80 knots ground speed as it maintained its southerly direction. Approximately 54 seconds into the flight, the aircraft started to lose speed and altitude. At 0.8 nautical mile (nm) south of Runway 17, the aircraft rolled to the left into a steep bank and descent angle and collided with terrain. There was a post-crash fire. The two occupants were fatally injured, and the aircraft was destroyed.
Map of the area
Work to date
This is what we know based on the initial examination:
A detailed weather record for CYBW on the day of the occurrence has been compiled.
The Automatic Terminal Information System (ATIS) message at the time of the occurrence was ATIS message Charlie, which stated the following: winds from 130° at 14 knots, visibility 9 statute miles, scattered cloud at 21 000 feet above sea level, temperature −5 °C, dew point −6 °C, and altimeter setting 30.31 inches of mercury. The active runway was Runway 17.
Communication of safety deficiencies
Should the investigation team uncover a safety deficiency that represents an immediate risk to aviation, the TSB will communicate immediately so that it may be addressed quickly.
Barry Holt has been an air safety investigator at the Transportation Safety Board of Canada (TSB) since 2001. He has been investigator-in-charge on over 300 class 5 and 20 class 3 investigations in the Western Region, and was part of the technical team that investigated the collision with water of the Cougar Helicopters' Sikorsky S-92A (A09A0016) off the coast of Newfoundland in 2009.
Before that, Mr. Holt spent 15 years in the field as an aircraft maintenance engineer, mostly in remote and/or northern locations, on light and heavy helicopters. Previously, he had been a hoist operator for search and rescue activities and a senior helicopter maintenance engineer for the Canadian Coast Guard, and also worked at Transport Canada in the Enforcement Branch for a short time.
The investigator-in-charge, Barry Holt, is being assisted in this investigation by TSB investigators with backgrounds in flight operations, aircraft performance, aircraft systems and engines, human performance, and air traffic control. Representatives from the operator, the manufacturer and the regulator are also providing assistance.
See more high resolution pictures on the TSB Flickr page.
Transportation Safety Board investigation process
There are 3 phases to a TSB investigation:
- Field phase: a team of investigators examines the occurrence site and wreckage, interviews witnesses and collects pertinent information.
- Examination and analysis phase: the TSB reviews pertinent records, tests components of the wreckage in the lab, determines the sequence of events and identifies safety deficiencies. When safety deficiencies are suspected or confirmed, the TSB advises the appropriate authority without waiting until publication of the final report.
- Report phase: a confidential draft report is approved by the Board and sent to persons and corporations who are directly concerned by the report. They then have the opportunity to dispute or correct information they believe to be incorrect. The Board considers all representations before approving the final report, which is subsequently released to the public.
For more information, see our Investigation process page.
TSB deploys a team of investigators to Springbank Airport in Calgary, Alberta, following a small aircraft accident
Read the deployment notice
- Date modified: