On October 12, 1995, at about 1800 eastern daylight time (EDT), a Gulfstream G-1159, N635AV, collided with construction barriers on runway 23L during landing at Cleveland Hopkins International Airport, in Cleveland, Ohio. The airline transport pilot (ATP) certificated pilot and copilot, the flight attendant, and the six passengers were not injured. The aircraft sustained substantial damage. The aircraft was being operated as a business flight under 14 CFR 91 when the accident occurred. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time and an IFR flight plan was filed. The trip originated in Frobisher, Canada, at 1430 EDT, and the destination was Cleveland, Ohio. Use your browsers 'back' function to return to synopsisReturn to Query Page
The pilot reported that the flight departed Canada and made a planned stop in Cleveland, Ohio to drop off a passenger and to clear customs. He stated that the ultimate intended destination was Jackson, Wyoming. According to the pilot, he was seated in the right seat during the approach to Cleveland, while the copilot, the flying pilot, was seated in the left seat. Both pilots stated that they obtained the Cleveland Automatic Terminal Information Service (ATIS) and Notice to Airmen (NOTAMS) with information regarding the construction on the runway and the runway restrictions. The pilots stated that the glideslope was inoperative for the approach, and that they made a normal approach to the runway. Both pilots stated that the sun was in their eyes and they did not see the construction barricades on the runway during the approach to landing. During the landing the left main landing gear struck the construction barriers at the approach end of runway 23L, the left main landing gear collapsed and the aircraft veered off the left side of the runway onto a grassy area.
The copilot was interviewed by a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Safety Inspector. According to the FAA Inspector, the copilot reported that although he was aware of the construction and runway restrictions, when he did not see any construction or vehicles on the runway during the approach, he assumed the NOTAM was for the departure end of runway 23L. He stated that on final approach the sun was in his eyes, so he used the aiming point markers on the runway for the approach. The copilot stated that after touchdown he saw the construction barriers, but he was unable to avoid hitting them.
The FAA Inspector stated that he interviewed the pilots after the accident and they both reported that the bright sun restricted their visibility. The Inspector stated that the NOTAM with regard to the runway states in part:
RY 5R - 23L NE 1899 ft. clsd. due to construction from 10-07-95 at 0500 lcl until 10-23-95 @ 1600 lcl RY usable length 7100 ft.
The pilot reported that there was no mechanical malfunction. The FAA Inspector stated that both pilots reported that they landed at Cleveland many times and the accident could have been prevented if the copilot had planned the approach to touchdown farther along the runway. Additionally, the pilot stated that he should have been more involved in the approach.