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12 December 1999 - Panda Leasing

Aircraft: Israel IAI-1124 Westwind
Registration: N50PL

The aircraft was destroyed when it impacted the ground in a steep nose-down dive. The last contact with the flight was when it was instructed to cross MYGZY intersection at 6,000' after having earlier been instructed to cross the WILES-BARRE VOR at 18,000'. During the descent into Teterboro Airport, New Jersey. Both these clearances were acknowledged by the crew who, apparently, gave no indication of any problems. The point of impact was about 8Nm from WILES-BARRE. The accident happened in darkness but in VMC. The aircraft was operating a personal flight from Seattle, Washington.

Probable Cause: Improper assembly of the horizontal stabilizer trim actuator unit caused the stabilizer to become disconnected from the actuator as the crew trimmed nose down on descent. Struck treetops and impacted the ground in a wooded area.

Transcript of the Cockpit Voice Recorder (CVR)

CAM - Cockpit area microphone
-1 - Voice identified as Captain
-2 - Voice identified as First Officer
* - denotes unintelligible word(s)
16.21:16 CAM-2 elevator up... my light just flashed on.
16.21:22 CAM-1 oh, your trim did?
16.21:22 CAM-2 yeah... there it goes again.
16.21:25 CAM-2 [sound of beep]
16.21:48 CAM-2 [six beeps similar to altitude alert signal]
16.22:21 CAM-1 your trim didn't work in the up position either, did it?
16.23:00 CAM-1 let me know if you see that light again.
16.23:03 CAM-2 I will, I will.
16.23:20 CAM-2 where's it gonna go?
16.24:07 CAM-1 they probably won't be able to do anything about the mic thing.
16.27:12 CAM-1 ** box grounds in turbulence.
16.28:34 CAM-2 afraid to touch anything in here.
16.29:25 CAM-1 we got a problem here **** schedule anyway.
16.30:04 CAM-2 [six beeps similar to altitude alert signal]
16.35:01 CAM-2 oooh, lights. oohoo.
16.35:04 CAM-1 amazing.
16.35:07 CAM-2 what is *?
16.35:09 CAM-2 a series of lines with contacts with for these lights through there.
16.35:13 CAM-1 yeah.
16.35:14 CAM-2 one of these lights, all the contacts around it were broken off. so they had to put a new one on there and weld them all together... complete the circuit.
16.37:45 CAM-2 it's trimmin'.
16.37:47 CAM-1 yeah I left the autopilot on intentionally.
16.38:05 CAM-1 yeah, I think this autopilot bus looks * mine.
16.38:55 CAM-2 [sound of three beeps]
16.38:56 CAM-2 elevator out of trim.
16.38:57 CAM-1 which way?
16.38:58 CAM-2 up.
16.39:00 CAM-2 [increase in general cockpit noise similar to aircraft increasing in speed]
16.39:23 CAM-1 keep pushin'.
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