|37000 Feet||Browse and search NASA's
Aviation Safety Reporting System
|Local Time Of Day||1801 To 2400|
|Locale Reference||airport : owd|
|Altitude||agl bound lower : 700|
agl bound upper : 700
|Controlling Facilities||tracon : owd|
tower : bwi
|Operator||general aviation : personal|
|Make Model Name||PA-28 Cherokee/Archer II/Dakota/Pillan/Warrior|
|Operating Under FAR Part||Part 91|
|Flight Phase||descent : approach|
|Function||flight crew : single pilot|
|Qualification||pilot : instrument|
pilot : private
|Experience||flight time last 90 days : 50|
flight time total : 700
flight time type : 400
|Affiliation||government : faa|
|Function||controller : local|
|Qualification||controller : non radar|
|Anomaly||other spatial deviation|
|Independent Detector||other flight crewa|
|Resolutory Action||flight crew : returned to intended course or assigned course|
|Primary Problem||Flight Crew Human Performance|
|Air Traffic Incident||other|
2 pieces of equipment were inoperative. 1) my approach timer, which I normally set to count down from the final approach fix. 2) the frequency knob on my second VOR had come off earlier in the day. In addition, I had left my second flashlight out of reach in the back seat. I made 2 approachs. On the first, I failed to descend aggressively enough because I was fumbling with my approach timer just as I was cleared for the approach. I hadn't set it earlier and was just discovering the battery had died as I passed the NDB, having intercepted the localizer a few moments earlier. I shortly realized I would have to use a different timer and estimated a conservative time for the remainder of my final approach segment. I broke out of the clouds right over the runway at 600 ft and executed a missed approach. On the missed I set up the boston VOR which was part of the missed approach procedure, re-established contact with boston approach and was vectored for my second try. On my second try I decided to slow things down and make sure I had plenty of time. I decided to use the autoplt to maintain my course while I aggressively descended to decision ht. I intercepted the localizer, having just set the VOR back to the right frequency, and started fiddling with the autoplt. Passing the NDB had already occurred when I got the autoplt set to the 'localizer' setting. I spent a few seconds fiddling with this dial because I didn't have a working flashlight in hand and the shadow of the yoke (illuminated by the cabin light) falls on this dial and its labels. I was already descending on the final approach segment, started the timer, checked the approach profile once again, and broke out of the clouds. It seemed to me that this whole procedure was only a few seconds in duration. Just as I broke out of the clouds I checked the VOR. It was at this point that I realized I was off course, and that the localizer needle was pinned. When I switched on the autoplt, I have to assume, I was already off course. The last time I had looked at the VOR, which was several hundred feet of descent earlier, it had been dead on. In any case, I quickly located the runway visually and landed, but I had been significantly off course during a significant portion of the descent. Real causes: changes in procedure breaking my concentration. Preventive actions: go out with my instructor and practice equipment failure scenarios in the dark.
Original NASA ASRS Text
Title: PF INTO OWD, MA, HAS DIFFICULTY FLYING IFR APCHS AND EXECUTES A MISSED APCH PATTERN IN ORDER TO TAKE THE TIME NOT TO BE RUSHED ON THE APCH.
Narrative: 2 PIECES OF EQUIP WERE INOP. 1) MY APCH TIMER, WHICH I NORMALLY SET TO COUNT DOWN FROM THE FINAL APCH FIX. 2) THE FREQ KNOB ON MY SECOND VOR HAD COME OFF EARLIER IN THE DAY. IN ADDITION, I HAD LEFT MY SECOND FLASHLIGHT OUT OF REACH IN THE BACK SEAT. I MADE 2 APCHS. ON THE FIRST, I FAILED TO DSND AGGRESSIVELY ENOUGH BECAUSE I WAS FUMBLING WITH MY APCH TIMER JUST AS I WAS CLRED FOR THE APCH. I HADN'T SET IT EARLIER AND WAS JUST DISCOVERING THE BATTERY HAD DIED AS I PASSED THE NDB, HAVING INTERCEPTED THE LOC A FEW MOMENTS EARLIER. I SHORTLY REALIZED I WOULD HAVE TO USE A DIFFERENT TIMER AND ESTIMATED A CONSERVATIVE TIME FOR THE REMAINDER OF MY FINAL APCH SEGMENT. I BROKE OUT OF THE CLOUDS RIGHT OVER THE RWY AT 600 FT AND EXECUTED A MISSED APCH. ON THE MISSED I SET UP THE BOSTON VOR WHICH WAS PART OF THE MISSED APCH PROC, RE-ESTABLISHED CONTACT WITH BOSTON APCH AND WAS VECTORED FOR MY SECOND TRY. ON MY SECOND TRY I DECIDED TO SLOW THINGS DOWN AND MAKE SURE I HAD PLENTY OF TIME. I DECIDED TO USE THE AUTOPLT TO MAINTAIN MY COURSE WHILE I AGGRESSIVELY DSNDED TO DECISION HT. I INTERCEPTED THE LOC, HAVING JUST SET THE VOR BACK TO THE RIGHT FREQ, AND STARTED FIDDLING WITH THE AUTOPLT. PASSING THE NDB HAD ALREADY OCCURRED WHEN I GOT THE AUTOPLT SET TO THE 'LOC' SETTING. I SPENT A FEW SECONDS FIDDLING WITH THIS DIAL BECAUSE I DIDN'T HAVE A WORKING FLASHLIGHT IN HAND AND THE SHADOW OF THE YOKE (ILLUMINATED BY THE CABIN LIGHT) FALLS ON THIS DIAL AND ITS LABELS. I WAS ALREADY DSNDING ON THE FINAL APCH SEGMENT, STARTED THE TIMER, CHKED THE APCH PROFILE ONCE AGAIN, AND BROKE OUT OF THE CLOUDS. IT SEEMED TO ME THAT THIS WHOLE PROC WAS ONLY A FEW SECONDS IN DURATION. JUST AS I BROKE OUT OF THE CLOUDS I CHKED THE VOR. IT WAS AT THIS POINT THAT I REALIZED I WAS OFF COURSE, AND THAT THE LOC NEEDLE WAS PINNED. WHEN I SWITCHED ON THE AUTOPLT, I HAVE TO ASSUME, I WAS ALREADY OFF COURSE. THE LAST TIME I HAD LOOKED AT THE VOR, WHICH WAS SEVERAL HUNDRED FEET OF DSCNT EARLIER, IT HAD BEEN DEAD ON. IN ANY CASE, I QUICKLY LOCATED THE RWY VISUALLY AND LANDED, BUT I HAD BEEN SIGNIFICANTLY OFF COURSE DURING A SIGNIFICANT PORTION OF THE DSCNT. REAL CAUSES: CHANGES IN PROC BREAKING MY CONCENTRATION. PREVENTIVE ACTIONS: GO OUT WITH MY INSTRUCTOR AND PRACTICE EQUIP FAILURE SCENARIOS IN THE DARK.
Data retrieved from NASA's ASRS site as of July 2007 and automatically converted to unabbreviated mixed upper/lowercase text. This report is for informational purposes with no guarantee of accuracy. See NASA's ASRS site for official report.