NTSB Identification: DEN05IA049.
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Nonscheduled 14 CFR
Incident occurred Thursday, January 06, 2005 in Englewood, CO
Probable Cause Approval Date: 07/07/2005
Aircraft: Gulfstream American G-1159A, registration: N111FA
Injuries: 5 Uninjured.

NTSB investigators used data provided by various sources and may not have traveled in support of this investigation to prepare this aircraft incident report.

According to the captain, he was cleared for a visual approach to runway 17L, which was confirmed and acknowledged. Approximately 30 seconds prior to landing, he was advised to "go around or sidestep" to runway 17R. He accepted the "sidestep" and was cleared to land runway 17R. The captain continued the approach, sidestepped to runway 17R and landed. After landing, the tower advised the captain that he had landed on taxiway Bravo. According to a witness who had completed several approaches after the Gulfstream, runway 17L and taxiway Bravo, were both "clean and clear," and runway 17R was snow covered. Taxiway Bravo is positioned between runway 17L and runway 17R. The "black" surface of runway 17L and taxiway Bravo created a "strong" contrast with the surrounding snow covered ground. Runway 17R had much less of a contrast due to the snow that remained on it. The airport's notices to airman (NOTAM) did not identify that runway 17R was snow covered.

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this incident to be:

the flight crew's misidentification of the parallel taxiway as an active runway, resulting in the flight crew executing a landing on the taxiway. Contributing factors include the airport's inadequate snow removal, the snow-covered runway, the visual illusions created by the airport surface environment, and the flight crew's airport familiarization.

Full narrative available

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