NTSB Identification: WPR10IA135
Scheduled 14 CFR Part 121: Air Carrier operation of SKYWEST AIRLINES INC (D.B.A. United Express)
Incident occurred Tuesday, February 16, 2010 in Los Angeles, CA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 02/27/2013
Aircraft: EMBRAER EMB-120ER, registration: N226SW
Injuries: 31 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.

At the completion of a scheduled passenger flight, the airplane was taxied to the arrival gate at which point the flight crew was marshaled into the gate by a ground marshaller. The captain reported that as he taxied into the gate area at a normal speed, he observed the lead-in line, a parked fuel truck on the right side, the jet bridge on the left side, and the marshaller. He felt confident the airplane could proceed to the gate and clear all of the obstacles. As he continued to taxi, he anticipated the marshaller shortly giving the stop signal and chose to maintain visual attention on the marshaller. Just as the marshaller raised his hands to perform the stop signal, the left propeller struck the jet bridge.
The first officer reported that he was looking out the right side of the airplane to make sure everything was clear of the wing and propeller. He reported that he never saw the jet bridge on the left side. He turned his attention back to the marshaller and saw his arms moving up indicating they were close to stopping. Before the marshaller crossed his day wands to indicate the stop location, the first officer felt something hit the airplane.
The marshaller reported that he was concentrating on the airplane’s right side where a fuel truck was parked close to the envelope line and was concerned about the truck’s proximity to the airplane. Because of where his attention was focused, he misjudged the stop line marked for EMB airplanes and instead signaled the airplane to stop on the line marked for CRJ airplanes. Just as he crossed his wands, the left engine propeller struck the jet bridge.
Postaccident examination of the airplane and surrounding parking area revealed that the airplane’s nosewheel tire came to rest about 18 feet beyond the stop line marked “EMB,” at a line marked “RJ50.”
A reenactment of the incident, accomplished by towing an airplane on the taxi line toward the RJ50 stop line, determined that the flight crew had a clear view of the surroundings associated with the gate, including the jet bridge, when both occupants turned to look out the left cockpit window. In addition, it was also determined that the captain would be able to see part of the left engine and propeller as the airplane approached the jet bridge just prior to the RJ50 stop line.

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

The flight crew’s failure to maintain clearance from the jet bridge during taxi. Contributing to the incident was the ramp marshaller's diverted attention and failure to signal the flight crew to stop at the correct position.

Full narrative available

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