ASN Aircraft accident Cessna 500 Citation I N501GP Bluefield-Mercer County Airport, WV (BLF)
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Status:Accident investigation report completed and information captured
Date:Wednesday 21 January 1981
Type:Silhouette image of generic C500 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Cessna 500 Citation I
Operator:Georgia Pacific Corp.
Registration: N501GP
MSN: 500-0026
First flight: 1972
Total airframe hrs:4439
Engines: 2 Pratt & Whitney Canada JT15D-1
Crew:Fatalities: 2 / Occupants: 2
Passengers:Fatalities: 3 / Occupants: 3
Total:Fatalities: 5 / Occupants: 5
Aircraft damage: Destroyed
Aircraft fate: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location:Bluefield-Mercer County Airport, WV (BLF) (   United States of America)
Phase: Landing (LDG)
Departure airport:Augusta-Bush Field, GA (AGS/KAGS), United States of America
Destination airport:Bluefield-Mercer County Airport, WV (BLF/KBLF), United States of America
Landed on a slush covered runway 23 following an ILS approach. Deceleration was poor and a go-around was attempted. Overran the runway and struck three localizer antennas and a 10-foot embankment before plunging into a steep, densely wooded hillside.

Probable Cause:

PROBABLE CAUSE: "The pilot's attempt to land on a slush covered runway with insufficient stopping distance available, and his delayed initiation of a go-around which resulted in there being insufficient runway available to complete the maneuver successfully. Contributing to the accident was the lack of adequate emphasis in the manufacturer's aircraft flight manual regarding the required aircraft landing stop distances under wet and icy runway conditions."

Accident investigation:

Investigating agency: NTSB
Status: Investigation completed
Duration: 140 days (5 months)
Accident number: NTSB-AAR-81-9
Download report: Final report

Runway excursion

Follow-up / safety actions

NTSB issued 4 Safety Recommendations

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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 Augusta-Bush Field, GA to Bluefield-Mercer County Airport, WV as the crow flies is 439 km (274 miles).
Accident location: Approximate; accuracy within a few kilometers.

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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Citation I

  • 377 built
  • 8th loss
  • 7th fatal accident
  • The worst accident (at the time)
  • 8th worst accident (currently)
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