Final Report: Learjet lost elevator

 - May 5, 2008, 7:42 AM

Bombardier Learjet 36, San Diego, Calif., Dec. 1, 2006–The in-flight loss of one of the Learjet’s elevators was caused by the pilot’s failure to maintain control while maneuvering, which resulted in exceeding the aircraft’s design stress limits, according to the NTSB. A factor was the sun glare that prevented the pilot from seeing the other aircraft it was maneuvering with for “a series of profiles for flight testing” of a common aviation command and control system for the Department of Defense. The pilot rolled right to remain clear of the other Learjet and ended up in an unusual attitude, a 70-degree right bank, 50 degrees nose down, at 380 kias. The crew noticed the aircraft was shuddering and upon landing discovered the right elevator was missing.