Factual Report: Falcon overruns icy runway

 - November 25, 2009, 4:58 AM

Dassault Falcon 20, Jamestown, N.Y., Dec. 21 2008–The aircraft was substantially damaged when it overran the runway while landing at Chautauqua County/Jamestown Airport in icy conditions around 1 a.m. The operator, Ameristar Jet Charter, reported that a Notam issued by the airport for the accident runway was in effect reporting thin loose snow over patchy ice.

According to the captain, the runway surface was visible but was “a solid sheet of ice.” Upon landing, the copilot, who was flying at the time, reported no braking action. The captain then took the controls and ordered the drag chute deployed at an approximate airspeed of “no less than 100 knots.” The aircraft came to a halt approximately 100 feet into the overrun after striking a snow berm.
Post-accident investigation revealed that the chute had failed to deploy and remained mostly inside its tailcone container. Investigators found no problems with the chute or its packing, and documentation from Dassault stated that the drag chute should be deployed as soon as possible after landing. The airport manager stated that the runway had been plowed and sanded along its full length. He noted that the airport does not use chemical de-icers. After the accident, airport staff described the runway as “slick but not ice covered.” Weather conditions around
the time of the accident were 18 degrees F with a visibility of 10 statute miles. Neither the pilot nor copilot was injured. Examination of the aircraft revealed substantial damage to its nose gear and fuselage buckling.