Landing Falcon 10 Hits Snowbanks

 - February 26, 2009, 11:27 AM

A Bermuda-registered Falcon 10 veered off the runway after touchdown at Samaden Airport in Switzerland on January 12 and hit piled snow. The 69-year-old captain and his first officer were killed and the sole passenger was injured. All occupants were Austrian nationals. After the accident, inspectors from the Swiss Office of Civil Aviation noted that snow removal from the runway did not conform with ICAO recommendations: the snow was piled in heights varying between five and 13 feet along the runway, rather than the recommended maximum of 3.3 feet, and piles were only 26 feet from the runway edge, rather than 33 feet. With a runway elevation of 5,600 feet, Samaden is one of Europe’s highest airports.