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Diamond DA62 crash in Dubai Airport caused by Thai A350 wake

The fatal crash of a Diamond DA62 twin prop aircraft in Dubai International airport on 16 May, 2019 has been attributed to wake turbulence, UAE’s General Civil Aviation Authority investigation report says.

On 16 May 2019 at 1808 l…


The fatal crash of a Diamond DA62 twin prop aircraft in Dubai International airport on 16 May, 2019 has been attributed to wake turbulence, UAE’s General Civil Aviation Authority investigation report says.

On 16 May 2019 at 1808 local time, G-MDME, the Diamond D62 aircraft, departed Dubai International Airport (OMDB) to carry out aerodrome ground lighting calibration checks as part of the OMDB southern runway refurbishment project. Onboard were two flight crewmembers, a calibration engineer and an observer.

The Investigation observed that as the DA62 flew the approach during which the Accident occurred, it followed a preceding Airbus A350-900 at a distance of 3.7 nm. The Airbus A350-900 was flying the approach to the parallel runway 30R.

Observations of previous approaches during the same calibration flight indicated that the DA62 consistently followed preceding traffic on approach to the parallel runway 30R at distances which were below the specified minimum separation, and less than the distances discussed during the pre-departure meeting.

The radar monitor recording indicated that there was an air traffic control (ATC) inconsistency in advising the DA62 of the expected occurrence of hazards caused by wake turbulence from traffic on approach to the parallel runway 30R.

The ground lighting check required the Aircraft to fly a number of approaches to, and low passes over, runway 30L. The flights were conducted under visual flight rules (VFR).

Prior to departure, the flight crew met air traffic control and airport representatives to discuss the calibration flights. Among the items discussed it was agreed that air traffic control would communicate with the DA62 on a separate frequency.

At 1808 the Aircraft departed OMDB from runway 30R to fly its first calibration approach to runway 30L. The Aircraft flew a total of nine circuits performing different aerodrome lighting checks.

At 1929, the Aircraft entered the final to runway 30L for the tenth approach, following a Thai Airways Airbus A350-900, which was flying the approach to the parallel runway 30R. The Airbus was approximately 3.7 nautical miles (nm) ahead of the DA62.

When the DA62 leveled off after turning onto final at an altitude of approximately 1,100 feet (ft) and at an airspeed of approximately 130 knots (kt), it rolled slightly but was recovered after nine seconds.

Seven seconds later, the Aircraft abruptly rolled to the left until it became inverted and it then entered a steep dive. 

The Aircraft impacted the ground approximately 3.5 nm from the runway 30L threshold. The impact was not visible to the runway approach camera.

The aircraft manufactured in November 2017, was owned and flown by Calibration Services Limited (FCSL) a UK based company that provides flight inspection services for airports in various regions, including the Middle East.

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