NYC97LA054
NYC97LA054

On February 14, 1997, about 0620 eastern standard time, a Cessna 208B, N922FE, operated by Baron Aviation Service, for Federal Express, struck a utility pole during an instrument approach to the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky Regional Airport, Covington, Kentucky. The airplane was substantially damaged, and the certificated commercial pilot was not injured. Instrument meteorological conditions prevailed for the cargo flight which departed from Memphis, Tennessee, about 0400. The flight was operated on an Instrument Flight Rules (IFR) flight plan under 14 CFR Part 135.

In the NTSB Pilot/Operator Aircraft Accident Report, the pilot stated:

"...Descent into CVG picked up moderate icing along with turbulence, sleet and snow. Was cleared for ILS 27 @ CVG. After intercepting localizer continued ILS until approximately DH where I acquired runway end strobe lights and descended to land. Somewhere during this descent, felt jolt to aircraft but proceeded with normal landing. Upon shutdown noticed damage to aircraft...."

In a telephone interview, the pilot reported that he thought the jolt was a bird strike. The visibility was better than 1/2 mile, and the cloud base was greater than 200 feet. He did not experience any problems with the airplane.

Examination of the airplane revealed that there was about 192 feet of power line wrapped around the landing gear. The left aileron and wing tip were missing from the airplane.

According to the FAA and airport police, a pole was struck 31 inches from the top, at a height of 27 feet above the ground. The pole was located 4,350 feet from the approach end of runway 27, and about 100 feet left of runway center line. The airplane's wing tip and left aileron were found near the pole. A review of airport facilities revealed that the glide slope for runway 27 was set for a slope of 3 degrees. This glide slope would have an elevation of 290 feet above the ground, at a distance of 4,350 feet from the approach end of the runway.

A check of the air/ground voice tape revealed that the pilot did not report the event to the control tower, and the accident was not reported to airport authorities until 2 hours after it occurred. The FAA and airport operations did not have any problems reported regarding the ILS approach to runway 27, by flights that preceded or followed the accident flight into the airport.

Radar Data from the Covington TRACON revealed that while on the approach, the airplane momentarily stopped descending at 1,900 feet for about 13.8 seconds, and again at 1,500 feet for the same time. The airplane was also observed to level off at 1,000 feet for about 9.2 seconds prior to loss of radar data. Additionally, the descent from 1,500 feet to 1,000 feet took 13.8 seconds, and the last 400 feet occurred in 9.2 seconds.

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