Comair flight control problems?

chperplt

Registered User
Joined
Nov 25, 2001
Posts
4,123
Total Time
.
Scheduled 14 CFRPart 121 operation of Air Carrier COMAIR INC
Incident occurred Wednesday, May 08, 2002 at Covington, KY
Aircraft:Bombardier CL600-2B19, registration: N709CA
Injuries: 18 Uninjured.

This is preliminary information, subject to change, and may contain errors. Any errors in this report will be corrected when the final report has been completed.

On May 8, 2002, about 1100 eastern daylight time, a Bombardier CL600-2B19 regional jet (CRJ), N709CA, hull number 7238, operating as Comair flight 5883, experienced aileron control stiffness during cruise flight, after departing Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport (CVG), Covington, Kentucky. The captain, first officer, flight attendant and 15 passengers were not injured. The flight was operating on an instrument flight rules flight plan to Eppley Airfield (OMA), Omaha, Nebraska. The scheduled passenger flight was conducted under 14 CFR Part 121.

According to the company's irregular operations report, the airplane was pushed back during a period of moderate to heavy rain. After pushback, the airplane was held on the taxiway for about 30 minutes while the rain continued. Takeoff, about 1030, also occurred during a period of heavy rain.

After leveling off at flight level 280, while in cruise flight, the "AP TRIM IS LWD" caution annunciator illuminated. The first officer disconnected the autopilot, and found the aileron controls "stiff and binding." The captain then took control of the airplane, and also found the aileron controls stiff and binding. The captain applied "light to moderate" roll input and felt a snap. Aileron control then operated normally.

The captain executed left and right turns with no additional problems or binding noted. The crew re-engaged the autopilot, and the flight continued to an uneventful landing.

On the same date, about the same time, a second CRJ, N937CA, hull number 7044, operating as Comair flight 5296, also experienced aileron control stiffness after departing Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport. The captain, first officer, flight attendant and 38 passengers were not injured. The flight was operating on an instrument flight rules flight plan to Will Rogers World Airport (OKC), Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. The scheduled passenger flight was conducted under 14 CFR Part 121.

According to the company's director of corporate safety, the flight had also departed about the same time as flight 5883. As reported in the company's irregular operations report, the airplane was climbing from flight level 290 to flight level 310, when the "autopilot RWD trim" caution annunciator illuminated. The crew completed the appropriate quick reference handbook (QRH) procedures, but 1 to 2 minutes later, the autopilot RWD trim caution annunciator again illuminated. The first officer disconnected the autopilot and felt he had jammed aileron controls. The captain then attempted fly from his side and also found the ailerons jammed. The crew completed the QRH jammed-aileron procedures, and diverted to Lambert-St. Louis International Airport (STL), St. Louis, Missouri.

About 1330, a third CRJ, N977CA, operating as Comair flight 5261, hull number 7157, also experienced aileron control stiffness while in cruise flight, after departing Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport about 1245. The captain, first officer, flight attendant and 17 passengers were not injured. The flight was operating on an instrument flight rules flight plan to Lehigh Valley International Airport (ABE), Allentown, Pennsylvania. The scheduled passenger flight was conducted under 14 CFR Part 121.

According to the company's irregular operations report, the LWD caution annunciator illuminated while the airplane was in cruise at flight level 290. The captain, who was the non-flying pilot, went through the pertinent QRH procedures and disconnected the autopilot. The autopilot was re-engaged, and the LWD caution annunciator again illuminated. The autopilot was again disconnected, "and the crew attempted to move the ailerons to no avail." The controls were not split. The captain contacted the company's maintenance control personnel, and was advised that his was the third similar event of the day and to descend to a lower altitude. The crew descended the airplane to 15,000 feet and felt the ailerons slowly loosen up. The crew declared an emergency and landed without further incident at Lehigh Valley.

Weather, recorded at Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport at 1038, included heavy rain and mist. The weather recorded at 1251, did not include rain; however, according to Comair's director of corporate safety, the airplane taxied through standing water prior to takeoff.

On June 6, 2000, a CRJ, N952C, hull number 7017, also experienced aileron control stiffness, which was documented as Safety Board occurrence number NYC00SA153. At the time, older CRJs, including hull number 7017, did not have splash shields installed. As a result of the investigation, Transport Canada and the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) issued airworthiness directives (ADs) to require CRJ hull numbers 7003 through 7323 have the splash shields installed.

The incident airplanes were in compliance with the ADs.
 
Top