Crew of stricken aircraft 'used time to their advantage'

Two people on board this plane escaped without injury when its nose gear failed while landing at the Toowoomba Airport.
Two people on board this plane escaped without injury when its nose gear failed while landing at the Toowoomba Airport.

CREW members of a Hawker Beechcraft aircraft that made a forced landing in Toowoomba earlier this year have been praised for their careful planning.

The Australian Transport Safety Bureau today released its report into the forced landing which took place in April.

The bureau reports that the pilot and co-pilot of the aircraft heard a "loud bang" shortly after taking off from Hervey Bay.

The plane's front landing gear had failed to retract.

After troubleshooting the problem, the crew decided to continue to the Toowoomba Airport for a forced landing.

>> read the full report here

During the forced landing, which took place with the gear partially down, the aircraft's nose lowered and slid along the runway.

The aircraft did not catch fire and no one was injured.

Mark Crampton relives the moment he had to land at Toowoomba Airport after the landing gear failed on his plane.
Mark Crampton relives the moment he had to land at Toowoomba Airport after the landing gear failed on his plane. Kevin Farmer

"While the crew were faced with an unfortunate situation, this accident highlighted the benefits of using time to your advantage," the Australian Transport Safety Bureau's report reads.

"The crew took the time to formulate a strategy for the landing, assigned responsibilities to each crew member, and then rehearsed the plan.

"This ensured that they were well prepared and ended in a safe outcome."

An examination of the aircraft found that a rod end had separated from a plunger tube, causing the malfunction.



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