Here's a good one:
Photo © George N Dean
Accident occurred Thursday, March 19, 1998 in PORTLAND, OR
Probable Cause Approval Date: 2/15/2001
Aircraft: Aerospatiale SN
-601, registration: N600RA
Injuries: 4 Uninjured.
The cockpit voice recorder (CVR) recording indicated that the pilot was unable to start the right engine before takeoff, and elected to attempt takeoff with the right engine inoperative.
Witnesses reported that the airplane's nose lifted off about 4,100 feet down the runway and that it then became airborne with its wings rocking, attaining a maximum altitude of 5 to 10 feet above the ground before settling back to the ground, departing the right side of the runway and entering an upright slide for about 1/2 mile.
Investigators removed the right engine starter-generator from the engine after the accident and found the starter-generator drive shaft to be fractured.
The aircraft has a minimum crew requirement of two, consisting of pilot and copilot; the copilot's seat occupant, a private pilot-rated passenger, did not hold a multiengine rating and thus was not qualified to act as second-in-command of the aircraft.
The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident as follows:
The pilot-in-command's decision to attempt takeoff with the right engine inoperative, resulting in his failure to maintain directional control or attain adequate airspeed during the takeoff attempt. Factors included a fractured right engine starter-generator drive shaft, resulting in an inability to perform a normal engine start on the ground.
Here's the cockpit conversation:
At 0916:00, the pilot said, "should be able to compression start it once it gets in the air."
The copilot's seat occupant replied, "seriously?", and the pilot stated, "yeah."
The copilot's seat occupant asked, "why would, why would you say that? I mean is there something that the air will do that you can't do here on the ground?" The pilot replied, "yeah it ah it turns the blades over." The copilot's seat occupant asked, "when will, when will you start it?" The pilot replied, "well we're gunna pull the ignition on as soon as we start ah as soon as we get rolling."
(NOTE: The SN
-601 AFM abnormal procedures section specifies that N2
RPM be greater than 50% for use of the immediate engine relight procedure, and the minimum airspeed in the normal relight envelope for a normal engine relight without starter is 200 KIAS.)
At 0916:48, the pilot called the tower, stating he was ready for departure. The tower cleared the flight for takeoff on runway 10L at 0917:01.
The CAM recorded the sound of increasing engine noise at 0917:12. At 0917:46, the copilot's seat occupant said, "there's seventy." At 0918:03, the pilot said, "come on."
Three seconds later, at 0918:06, the CAM recorded the sound of a beeping horn starting; the beeping horn sound continued to the end of the recording. At 0918:10, the CAM recorded the start of a rumbling sound, which continued until the recording ended six seconds later, at 0918:16.