Headwind distracts pilot

Aircraft: Beech G35. Injuries: None. Location: Brenham, Texas. Aircraft damage: Substantial.

What reportedly happened: The pilot, who was attempting to land at a busy non-towered airport, encountered a strong gusty headwind during the approach.

Distracted by the headwind, he forgot to extend the landing gear.

After the airplane came to a stop, he removed his electronic noise-canceling headphones and he then heard the landing gear warning horn, which was not wired into the audio inter-phone system.

Probable cause: The pilot’s failure to extend the landing gear during the approach, resulting in a gear-up landing.

NTSB Identification: CEN11CA212

This February 2011 accident report is provided by the National Transportation Safety Board. Published as an educational tool, it is intended to help pilots learn from the misfortunes of others.


  1. Tom Davis says

    I am glad this pilot was not hurt, and I don’t think it is about the headset. For anyone moving into complex aircraft, best to get in the habit of putting the gear down on the down wind leg, then use both base and final to double check. That way you know the gear are down. Even the heavies put em down with plenty of time for double checks. Better to know they are down then to hope a horn will remind you

  2. Ray Klein says

    So glad to hear that no injurys (eccept pride) were suffered. But do we REALLY need to have headsets that cancel out ALL SOUND?? This is crazy. I rely on the sound of the aircraft and even wind/slipstream sounds to fly correctly. To fly with all sounds cancelled is to fly with your head in the sand. Don’t even get me started with the new “gee-wiz” heads-down glass cockpits. Oy.

    • Chris Hastert says

      I personally use noise cancelling headsets from a well know company, and still hear the engine and a small external timer I use for switching tanks. The timer is no more audible with the noise cancelling turned off as the engine and wind noise cover it up as well. I think the key is distraction, I have missed the timer for a few seconds while flying through busy airspace due to all of the radio traffic. The ANC headsets work great for reducing the noise, but my experience is that they don’t even come close to completely cancelling the noise.

    • Joe Greulich says

      Way to go, I fly an experimental and I want to hear all the sounds also … wait till these electronic units get some time on them. The manufactures will have changed over time.

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