The chief pilot of the flight school at the airport in Brunswick, Georgia, reported that the pilot receiving instruction was taxiing the Diamond DA42 to the runway at the non-tower-controlled airport and was “heads-in” looking down and researching information on his iPad when he heard someone yell, “stop.”
He quickly applied the brakes, but the plane collided with an airplane stopped on the taxiway, holding short of the runway.
The chief pilot added the flight instructor was inputting radio frequencies and was unaware that the pilot was also looking inside the airplane. The instructor looked up just in time to hear the backseat passenger yell “stop” and see the collision.
The safety coordinator of the flight school that operated the stopped airplane reported that, while holding short of the runway and performing the before takeoff checklist, the flight instructor and pilot receiving instruction felt a hard impact from the rear.
The stopped airplane sustained substantial damage to the elevator.
The safety coordinator and chief pilot both reported that there were no preaccident mechanical failures or malfunctions with their respective airplanes that would have precluded normal operation.
Probable cause: The pilot receiving instruction’s failure to see and avoid an airplane holding short of the runway on the taxiway and the flight instructor’s lack of situational awareness.
NTSB Identification: GAA18CA198B
This February 2018 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.
Would have been a runway incursion if not for the roadblock.
The hold short bars isn’t the place to get ready for flight.
CFI failure for sure. Pilot perhaps depending on stage of instruction, but even then his common sense would have to surpass the apparent level of instruction being received.
I’ve always taught, heads up and eyes out during taxi, period. Set things up pre-taxi, or at the run-up pad. This was reinforced one night, when another aircraft nearly hit us head on while we were stopped on the run-up pad. They stopped so close that they had to shut down and push back to clear our aircraft.
Distracted flying? We’ve all heard about distracted driving using cellphones for texting. My guess is in their minds they can drive and text so it’s ok to taxi while using their iPad……..
Jim Macklin says
iPads and most electronic displays take too much time to find the info you want and need. Not that they are bad but how to use them isn’t taught properly.
Preflight and before start and take a note. A VN war fight pilot taught me to use a grease pencil to write on the window critical numbers.
Has nothing to do with the iPad. Entering information while taxiing in the Nav panel will result in the same thing.
Mark Jarratt says
The KC-135 instructor pilot who was training me to become an instructor used a Vis-a-Vis pen to take notes like that on his sliding cockpit window, obstructing his view outside. I was in the jump seat as we were climbing out of Palmdale’s pattern when I happened to see a private T-34A through his side window. I yelled “TRAFFIC!” and pointed. He pulled up in the nick of time. Closest “near-hit” I’ve ever had at about 100 feet laterally (our wingspan was 131 feet). I’m sure the other guy’s shorts were full of bricks too. So this is not necessarily a solution. Keep your windows clean and your head on a swivel!
another child of the magenta
Remember the old saying “fly the airplane first” ??
JimH in CA says
Yup, the PIC was at fault, which was the instructor in the right seat. The student pilot was in the left seat.
And, per the 6120 form, the instructor was fired.
I was taught that after engine start and the avionics are turned on, do all of the setups – frequencies, maps, tablet loads BEFORE moving the aircraft…
So the DA42 prop. only hit the Cessna elevator twice….2 nice slices.
So I’ll call this a stupid instructor trick.
Warren Webb Jr says
No excuse for not maintaining proper lookout. There really has to be a proper time and place for these pre-takeoff chores, certainly not during taxi at this level. Doing these things before taxi may work in some cases, but in other cases, staying in the parking position for several minutes could result in one’s prop-wash causing hazards to others. In another situation, there were numerous times when there was a preflight inspection lesson being conducted on the airplane next to us. Our engine start created a total interruption to that lesson, so after engine start and oil pressure check, I rolled out of the parking position to an appropriate nearby spot to finish all remaining checklist items and allow the other lesson to continue.
Gary Moore says
not surprising….but let’s not blame this on the iPad…. I’m sure there is some history of this happening with a sectional.
This absolutely is on the pilot…..
Not as likely. Sectionals are colorful and not as elusive as iPads on the floorboards.
Charts have a pre-drawn yellow “go to” line, that’s it.
Chart users have two nav-coms, frequencies already selected.
Chart pilots know which way they’re departing the airport to intercept the radial already selected on the OBS.
….What could go wrong?….😁