In a report released this week by the Transportation Safety Board (TSB), investigators cited a number of factors that led to the crash post-takeoff of a Beechcraft King Air B-100 from Abbotsford airport (CYXX) in British Columbia’s Lower Mainland on February 23, 2018.
The non-revenue charter flight, carrying family members bound for a vacation in California, took off in falling snow and stalled once leaving ground effect, crashing on airport grounds and resulting in serious injuries to the ATPL-rated pilot (also the charter company owner) and five passengers. The remaining four passengers received minor injuries.
The TSB makes note of a number of factors, including the rapid formation of airframe ice once the aircraft was rolled out of its heated hangar (ground icing). Also cited was poor flight planning that led to the aircraft being over gross weight when the operational flight plan indicated it was under.
Head injuries to the front seat occupants were exasperated by the occupants not using the available shoulder restraints. Both occupants received facial fractures and lacerations as well as spinal fractures.
The TSB also mentions that two weeks prior to the accident, the operator received a letter from Transport Canada – Civil Aviation (TCCA) citing a number of concerns about the company’s operations, including unairworthy aircraft, aircraft defects not being recorded properly, issues with its quality assurance program and numerous findings of alleged non-compliance related to technical dispatch and flight crew member qualifications. Two days before the crash, the operator received a Notice of Suspension with an effective date of March 28, 2018.
Ownership of the charter company has since changed hands.
The full TSB report is appended below.
Photos credit: TSBA18P0031