Aviation news release 2009

TSB # A04/2009


(Gatineau, Quebec, September 09, 2009) - Many flight crews do not receive training to deal effectively with bounced landings says the Transportation Safety Board of Canada (TSB). A bounced landing occurs when an airplane's wheels initially touch down but then lift up again as the plane moves forward on the runway. The TSB says this type of landing can happen to any aircraft carrying passengers or cargo, and that, if crews are not properly trained on how to handle it, there is a risk of an accident.

On July 22, 2008, at Hamilton Airport (A08O0189) a large cargo jet touched down hard and bounced before touching down hard a second time. Immediately after the second touchdown, the pilot decided to perform a go-around. During this manoeuvre, the tail contacted the runway. The aircraft climbed away and returned for a normal landing. There were no injuries and only minor damage to the aircraft.

In its investigation, the TSB found that while the aircraft manufacturer's manual contained guidance on what to do if the plane bounced on landing, the pilots had never practiced this manoeuvre or received training to safely control and land a plane under these circumstances.

"There are risks associated with this type of manoeuvre," said Mark Clitsome, Director of Air Investigations, "and our investigation shows there is an underlying problem that must be addressed before a more serious accident happens."

In light of this problem, the TSB is calling for operators to train crews on this manoeuvre and make it part of their training program.

Without training to improve crew awareness and skills, an unacceptable risk to crews and the travelling public will continue to exist.

That's why the Board is recommending that the Department of Transport require air carriers to incorporate bounced landing recovery techniques in their manuals and during their training activities.

"Pilots rely on training and checklists when problems arise. The best way to ensure the safe outcome of a bounced landing is to make pilots more aware and better prepared," said Mr. Clitsome.

The TSB is an independent agency that investigates marine, pipeline, railway and aviation transportation occurrences. Its sole aim is the advancement of transportation safety. It is not the function of the Board to assign fault or determine civil or criminal liability.

For more information, contact:
Transportation Safety Board of Canada
Media Relations
Telephone: 819-994-8053
Email: media@tsb.gc.ca