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Gear-up landing

PUBLISHED: 15:37 24 June 2011 | UPDATED: 14:07 10 October 2012

The pilot of the Cherokee Lance was downwind for a third successive touch-and go landing. His usual practice was to lower the landing gear when abeam the runway...

The pilot of the Cherokee Lance was downwind for a third successive touch-and go landing. His usual practice was to lower the landing gear when abeam the runway numbers on the downwind leg, then turn base and select two stages of flap. On final he normally selected the third stage of flap and checked ‘reds, blues and three greens’.

On this occasion, when he was established on final the air/ground radio operator reported the wind and the position of an aircraft ahead. The Lance pilot did not hear the position report and asked for it to be repeated, then called final and started to slow the aircraft.

During the flare he realised that something was wrong when he heard a scraping noise from underneath the aircraft. He looked down at the gear lever and saw that it was selected DOWN but the three green lights were not lit. The aircraft slid on its underside and then veered to the right and came to rest in the grass area to the side of the runway.

The pilot believed that he had selected the gear lever DOWN but then became distracted and may not have checked for ‘three greens’.

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