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Accident description
Last updated: 24 October 2017
Status:Final
Date:Wednesday 19 August 1998
Time:17:15
Type:Silhouette image of generic B190 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Beechcraft 1900D
Operated by:Great Lakes Airlines
On behalf of:United Express
Registration: N251GL
C/n / msn: UE-251
First flight:
Total airframe hrs:4142
Crew:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 3
Passengers:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 12
Total:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 15
Airplane damage: Substantial
Airplane fate: Repaired
Location:near Denver International Airport, CO (DEN) (   United States of America)
Phase: Initial climb (ICL)
Nature:Domestic Scheduled Passenger
Departure airport:Denver International Airport, CO (DEN/KDEN), United States of America
Destination airport:Rock Springs-Sweetwater County Airport, WY (RKS/KRKS), United States of America
Flightnumber:UE1605
Narrative:
A Beechcraft 1900D, N251ZV, operating as United Express flight 1605, was substantially damaged when the erosion shield separated from one of the left propeller blades and punctured the pressure vessel during initial climb at Denver, Colorado. One passenger sustained a minor injury.
The airplane taxied from its gate at 17:10, and took off from runway 17R at 17:14. Reaching 500 feet agl after takeoff, the crew heard a loud 'bang,' followed by slight vibration from the left prop. The aircraft returned for a landing on runway 17L at 17:19.

Postaccident examination revealed the entire erosion shield was missing. There were three holes punctured in the fuselage. The first hole was about 12 inches aft of the airstair door and just above the cabin window. The second hole was slightly higher than the first. The third hole was at the top of the fuselage. A portion of the erosion shield entered the cabin and knocked out the overhead passenger service unit at seat 1A. Two small dents were found in the ceiling. The inner window pane at seat 2C was punctured and a piece of the erosion shield was found lodged between the inner and outer panes. Another piece was found between the ceiling and the pressure vessel. The passenger seated in row 2C sustained a small cut on his forehead when he was grazed by a piece of the shrapnel. He refused medical treatment.

Pratt and Whitney PT6A-67D

Probable Cause:

PROBABLE CAUSE: "Debonding of the propeller erosion shield due to an improper overhaul and repair by other maintenance personnel."

Accident investigation:
cover
Investigating agency: NTSB
Status: Investigation completed
Duration: 1 year and 6 months
Accident number: FTW98FA364
Download report: Summary report

Sources:
» NTSB


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Map
This map shows the airport of departure and the intended destination of the flight. The line between the airports does not display the exact flight path.
Distance from Denver International Airport, CO to Rock Springs-Sweetwater County Airport, WY as the crow flies is 414 km (259 miles).

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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