Aviation safety investigations & reports

Engine Failure - VH-PSQ, Cessna 208, 15 km west of Townsville Airport, Qld, 14 Jan 2008

Investigation number:
Status: Completed
Investigation completed


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On 14 January 2008 the pilot of a single-engine Cessna Aircraft Company 208 conducted a successful forced landing back onto the departure runway after the aircraft's engine failed. The flight, with six passengers onboard, had earlier departed Townsville, Qld on a private Instrument Flight Rules (IFR) flight to Mt. Isa.

The evidence showed that the failure of the engine was precipitated by the fracture and separation of a single blade from the compressor turbine (CT) disc. The gross mechanical interference caused by the release of that blade into the confines of the turbine section contributed to the subsequent forced fracture of the other CT blades and the downstream migration of blade debris. The remainder of the internal engine damage was identified as secondary damage as a result of that debris.

Damage to the area of crack initiation limited the extent of examination such that the root cause of fatigue initiation could not be established with certainty. However, from the available evidence, it was considered likely that the crack initiated at a localised area of stress concentration, such as may have arisen from the passage of foreign object debris through the engine, from handling or tooling damage sustained during a prior maintenance activity, or from the effects of an isolated blade casting anomaly that was not evident to the examination.

Download Final Report
[Download  PDF: 3.41MB]
General details
Date: 14 January 2008   Investigation status: Completed  
Time: 1035 EST   Investigation level: Systemic - click for an explanation of investigation levels  
Location   (show map): Townsville Airport    
State: Queensland   Occurrence type: Engine failure or malfunction  
Release date: 05 June 2009   Occurrence category: Serious Incident  
Report status: Final   Highest injury level: None  

Aircraft details

Aircraft details
Aircraft manufacturer Cessna Aircraft Company  
Aircraft model 208  
Aircraft registration VH-PSQ  
Serial number 20800213  
Type of operation Private  
Damage to aircraft Nil  
Departure point Townsville, Qld  
Destination Mount Isa, Qld  
Crew details
Role Class of licence Hours on type Hours total
Pilot-in-Command ATPL 818 3964
Last update 03 April 2020