On November 6, 2007, at 1253 eastern standard time, a Cessna 208B, N701SE, registered to RJR Transport Logistics LLC, and operated by Florida Air Cargo, Inc., and a Beech E18S, N18R, registered to Aircap Management Company, Inc., and operating as Island Air Service, collided on a Taxiway at the Opa Locka Airport (OPF), in Miami, Florida. Both airplanes were operating under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 135 as cargo flights, with visual flight plans filed. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the accident, and both airplanes sustained substantial damage. The commercial pilot in the Cessna 208B reported no injuries and the airline transport pilot in the Beech E18S reported no injuries. The Cessna 208B flight originated from North Eleuthera Airport (MYEH), North Eleuthera, Bahamas, on November 6, 2007, and the Beech E18S, was taxiing to a fuel farm prior to departure to Nassau Pindling International Airport (MYNN), Nassau, Bahamas. Use your browsers 'back' function to return to synopsisReturn to Query Page
According to the pilot of the Cessna 208B, after landing on runway 9L, he advised the local controller he was clear of the active runway on C taxiway and was going to customs. The local controller acknowledged his call and instructed him to taxi to customs and to remain on the local control frequency. After crossing taxiway P, out of the corner of his eye he saw the Beech E18S and tried to avoid by turning hard right, but was unsuccessful. He egressed the airplane without injury. Damage to the airplane consisted of the left wing, left wing strut, propeller and engine.
According to the pilot of the Beech E18S, after conducting a preflight inspection of his airplane, he contacted ground control for taxi instructions from the east ramp to the fuel farm. He was told to taxi to the fuel farm via taxiway P, E, and T. The pilot stated that he taxied at a slow speed because he was in a tail wheel airplane. The pilot also stated that he never received instructions to hold short of any taxiways and did not hear any ground control transmissions to the Cessna 208B. As he crossed taxiway C, he felt a large bump and his airplane spun to the right. He shut both engines down, turned the magnetos off and exited the airplane through the aft cargo door. Damage to the airplane consisted of the left wing.
According to a National Transportation Safety Board Air Traffic Control Factual Report produced for this accident, the Cessna 208B, departed MYEH at 1020, and arrived at OPF at 1148, landing on runway 9L. The Beech E18S, had taxied from OPF east ramp parking to the OPF fuel farm prior to a planned departure to MYNN. The Cessna 208B was on the local control frequency, as directed by the tower local controller and the Beech E18S was on the ground control frequency when the accident occurred at the intersection of Taxiway C and N.
According to Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) order 7110.65, Air Traffic Control, paragraph 3-1-4, "Coordination Between Local and Ground Controllers" states in part: "Local and ground controllers shall exchange information as necessary for the safe and efficient use of airport runways and movement areas. This may be accomplished via verbal means, flight progress strips, other written information. Or automation displays."
According to interviews with the local controller and the ground controller working in the temporary air traffic control tower, neither of them observed the collision. In addition, although the Cessna 208B was entering the ground controller’s area of responsibility, the local controller did not coordinate with the ground controller, as required by FAA Order 7110.65, paragraph 3-1-4, Coordination between Local and Ground Controllers. Both pilots should have been on ground control frequency, but the local controller directed the Cessna 208 to remain on the local control frequency. Thus, the two airplane involved in the accident were not initially aware of each other because the Beech E18S was on ground control frequency and the Cessna 208B was on local control frequency.
Additionally, the pilots of the two airplanes had a responsibility and final authority to the operation of their respective airplanes in accordance with the provisions of 14 CFR Part 91.3; Responsibility and authority of the pilot in command, which states in part; (a) the pilot in command of an aircraft is directly responsible for, and is the final authority as to, the operation of that aircraft. In addition, the pilot of both airplanes had a responsibility to see and avoid each other in accordance with 14 CFR Part 91, section 113, Right of Way Rules, paragraph (b), General, which states in part: "When weather conditions permit, regardless of whether an operation is conducted under instrument flight rules or visual flight rules, vigilance shall be maintained by each person operating an aircraft so as to see and avoid other aircraft".