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Last updated: 2 December 2021
Status:Final
Date:Monday 1 August 2005
Time:10:11
Type:Silhouette image of generic CL2T model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Canadair CL-215-6B11 (CL-415)
Operator:Securité Civile
Registration: F-ZBEO
MSN: 2011
First flight: 1995
Total airframe hrs:3392
Engines: 2 Pratt & Whitney Canada PW123AF
Crew:Fatalities: 2 / Occupants: 2
Passengers:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 0
Total:Fatalities: 2 / Occupants: 2
Aircraft damage: Destroyed
Aircraft fate: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location:1,5 km (0.9 mls) from Calvi (   France)
Phase: Maneuvering (MNV)
Nature:Fire fighting
Departure airport:Ajaccio-Campo dell'Oro Airport (AJA/LFKJ), France
Destination airport:Ajaccio-Campo dell'Oro Airport (AJA/LFKJ), France
Narrative:
After take-off from Ajaccio Airport and a first scooping, the fleet composed of three planes with respective callsigns Pelican 44, Pelican 36 and Pelican 37 intervened on a fire at Piétramaggiore, near Calvi, Corsica, France.
A first sector of the fire zone was treated by six passes. During the two following passages, the fleet dropped on another sector of the fire.
Pelican 36 began its last scooping in the Gulf of Revellata at heading 250°, three minutes and fourteen seconds before the accident. At the end, it gained height and continued the circuit to arrive on the drop axis.
The "doubling" action consists of releasing the water load at the precise location of the previous aircraft's release. During the last turn, it reached an altitude of 2160 ft. Pelican 36 was observed on a trajectory estimated to be consistent by the crew of the following aircraft (Pelican 37) a few seconds before it passed over the drop site. However, video evidence shows that the track of Pelican 36 is further west than that of Pelican 44, which preceded it, and over higher terrain. One and a half seconds before the flight recorder stopped, the aircraft was in a right turn at an altitude of 1360 ft. The angle of roll to the right and increasing was then 17°. While the elevators were nearly stable, the altitude stored by the flight recorder increased to 1500 ft in one and a half seconds. After that the tail section of the aircraft separated from the fuselage. The aircraft then impacted the side of a mountain and broke up.

Probable Cause:

Possible causes of the event
1/ Environmental area
The load case studied during the investigations did not explain the observed fuselage failure. However, the characteristics of the upward aerological disturbance caused by the fire are likely to have generated airframe stresses of an order of magnitude close to that of the loads capable of causing the fuselage to fail. Given the uncertainties encountered during the evaluation of the parameters of the rising air column that affected the accuracy of the research results concerning the effects of the stresses on the airframe, the aerological phenomenon encountered represents a possible cause of the event.
2 Technical Area
The research undertaken to find in-flight loads capable, in the context of the event, of breaking the intact fuselage without damaging the empennage was unsuccessful. Detailed observation of the airframe did not reveal any damage prior to the occurrence. However, the results of these investigations do not rule out the existence of such damage, so the hypothesis of prior damage to the airframe cannot be totally rejected.

Accident investigation:
cover
Investigating agency: BEAD
Status: Investigation completed
Duration: 2 years and 9 months
Accident number: BEAD-air-S-2005-013-A
Download report: Final report

Classification:
Tail failure
Loss of control

Sources:
» AFP


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This information is not presented as the Flight Safety Foundation or the Aviation Safety Network’s opinion as to the cause of the accident. It is preliminary and is based on the facts as they are known at this time.
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