Preliminary Report: Fender Bender on Taxiway M

 - March 16, 2007, 10:50 AM

FAIRCHILD SWEARINGEN SA-226-TC AND SA-227-AC, DENVER, COLO., DEC. 3, 2003–Two Fairchild Swearingens–an SA-226-TC (N60U) and SA-227-AC (N340AE)–collided in the dark while taxiing at Denver International Airport (DIA). Both aircraft were substantially damaged but neither pilot was hurt in the 5:55 a.m. MST accident. The airplanes were both being operated by Key Lime of Englewood, Colo., under Part 135 as cargo flights. They were originating at the time of the accident. Both pilots had filed IFR flight plans and were operating in night VMC. The pilot of N60U reported that he taxied into N340AE, which was standing on taxiway M while waiting to take off on Runway 17R.

N340AE was spun to the right during the collision, entangling its empennage with N60U’s empennage. The outboard eight feet of N60U’s right wing was severed. The outboard two feet of the right propeller blades showed chordwise scratches, torsional bends and leading-edge gouges and chips. The airplane’s empennage was crushed and bent.

The bottom empennage of N340AE was scraped and torn, and its left wingtip was bent upward and showed skin wrinkles. An eight-foot-long, two-foot-wide section of the left outboard wing’s trailing edge was torn out. The airplane’s empennage was crushed and bent.